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Archive for the ‘Noodles’ Category

Carrot Tagliatelle

 

Carrot Tagliatelle

It occured to me recently that I’d never posted the recipe for the homemade tagliatelle I’d made to accompany the saged carrot pasta sauce.  Since Autumn in all its glory is on my mind these days, I figured this would be a good time to add the method for this wonderfully autumnal-hued pasta.    If you’d like to recreate the dish pictured above, just top this carrot tagliatelle with the velvety sauce found here.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup semolina flour

1/2 cup unbleached flour

1 tsp walnut oil

few tablespoons carrot juice

Directions:

Place dry ingredients into a food processor.  Pulse to mix.  Add in oil and then add the carrot juice a tablespoon at a time while the machine is running until the dough pulls off the sides and forms a ball.  Move to a floured surface and knead a few times.  Shape into a flattened disc and wrap in plastic wrap.  Allow the dough to relax for at least an hour before rolling.

Flour the dough and run it through a pasta machine at the highest setting a couple of times.  Progressively run it through higher settings until the thickness you wish is achieved.   Cut into long strips and lightly dust with semolina flour to prevent sticking.  Let pasta rest for 15 minutes or so before cooking.

Fresh pasta takes only a couple of minutes to cook.

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These are, hands down, my new favorite food.  I eat them solo, as a base for pasta sauces and float them atop soups as a super flavorful garnish.  They are wonderful hot right out of the pan or cold the following day.  They are a great way to add more potassium-rich vegetables to your diet,  and if you’re looking for a pasta replacement, gluten-free or not, these lean green noodles are an awesome substitution. 

Garlicky Zucchini Noodles

Ingredients:

zucchini [For these noodles, I look for medium-sized, straight-necked zucchini.]

garlic, sliced thinly

olive oil

red pepper flakes

salt

Spiral slicer [preferred, I use a World Cuisine Tri-Blade Slicer] or vegetable peeler

Directions:

I’ve not given amounts of zucchini and garlic because it’s ultimately up to you to decide how garlicky you like your food.  I use one clove per two medium-sized zucchini.

Spiral slice or using a vegetable peeler, peel your squash making sure to turn it after each down stroke in order to keep the squash evenly peeled all around.  Once you hit the center and begin to see the seed bed, toss the core.  You do not want the seeds for these noodles.  Generously salt the noodles and set aside for 30 minutes in a colander.  Once the salt has pulled the water out of the noodles and wilted them, rinse them thoroughly under running water.  Squeeze the excess water from them and then pat them dry using paper towels or a clean dish towel. 

Pour a bit of olive oil into a pan and heat over a medium flame.  Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant but not browned.  Add a pinch of red pepper flakes.  Add the zucchini noodles and toss periodically for about 5 minutes.  Remove from the heat, and serve hot.

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I have fallen in love with Tofu Shirataki noodles.  They’re packed full of fiber and calcium and have such a low calorie count they are almost an afterthought.  I’ve been using them lately in everything and wanted to spread the word to those of you who may be looking for interesting and less caloric pasta choices.  They have a somewhat squidgy texture, but they’re soft unlike kelp noodles which are crunchy and brittle-textured.  Here I tossed them with some quickly sautéed kale [we have to get in our daily cruciferious fix!], shiitakes and garlic in a really quickly freshened Asian-style sauce.

 

Orange and Mushroom Noodles with Kale

Ingredients:

1 bunch lacinato kale

2 cups sliced shiitake mushroom caps

1 small onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, sliced

½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice, plus the zest of one orange

¼ cup vegetarian oyster sauce [aka mushroom sauce easily found in Asian groceries]

1 – 8 oz package Tofu Shirataki, or noodle of your choice

Directions:

Add a couple teaspoons of neutral oil to a sauté pan and bring to a medium heat.  Add the mushrooms and onion.  Sauté until softened. 

Add the orange juice, zest and vegetarian oyster sauce to a small pan and bring to a low simmer.  Allow this to simmer and reduce slightly while the vegetables cook.

Put a pot of water on to boil to heat the noodles.

Add the garlic and kale to the pan containing the mushrooms and onions.  Once the kale has wilted down [should take about 10 minutes], add the sauce and set aside.

Rinse the noodles under running water and then add to a pot of boiling water.  Boil for 2-3 minutes.  Drain and toss with the vegetables and sauce.

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For whatever reason, the health virtues of  rye have been popping up left and right in my reading material recently.  That prompted me to pick up some dark rye flour from Bob’s Red Mill the last time we were in Portland.  On the drive home I was contemplating how I could use the flour in a meal and I started thinking about what I used to love rye with.  The Reuben sandwich was the hands down winner.  So how could I transform this sandwich classic into an alternative meal?  With a smile on my face it occurred to me that I could make a dark rye pasta with caraway seeds…and the daydreaming just went on from there.

Russian Dressing Pasta Sauce

This is a wonderful sauce that can also be used as a salad dressing or sandwich spread when cooled.

Ingredients:

1 onion, medium dice

3 oz tomato paste

2 cups vegetable stock

1 package organic firm silken tofu

1 T vegan worcestershire sauce

1 tsp chili garlic paste

sea salt

freshly-cracked black pepper

olive oil for sautéing the onions

Directions:

Sauté the onions in a small drizzle of olive oil until softened.  Add the tomato paste and spread onto the bottom of the pan to caramelize.  Add the stock and whisk gently until the tomato paste is incorporated into the sauce.  Add the worcestershire sauce and chili garlic paste.  Mix well.

In a food processor, pulse the tofu until creamed.  Add a ladleful of the tomato sauce to the food processor and pulse.  Transfer the contents to the pan on the stove containing the tomato sauce and mix until fully homogenous.  Simmer over medium low heat for 15 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.

Dark Rye Pasta

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 cup dark rye flour [Organic Dark Rye Flour]

1 cup semolina flour

1 tsp caraway seeds

4 tsp olive oil

12-16 oz of water [more may be necessary depending upon the moisture level of your flours]

Directions:

Add the flours to a food processor.  Drizzle in the olive oil and pulse.  With the processor running, slowly drizzle in the water and continue to do so until the dough pulls off the sides and clings to the center “S”-blade.  Remove the dough from the processor and place upon a flour coated surface.  If the dough is too tacky then incorporate in more flour until it is no longer tacky to the touch.  Knead the dough a dozen times or so and then shape into a flattened round.  Wrap in plastic and set aside to rest for 15-30 minutes.

Remove plastic and divide into two.  Run through the largest setting on the pasta roller twice, then repeat two settings higher.  Either cut with the fettuccine attachment or by hand into strips.

When ready to cook, gently drop into salted boiling water and cook until the pasta comes to the surface.  This should take between one and two minutes.

Pastrami-Spiced Tempeh

Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 – 8 oz package tempeh, cut in 1/2-inch strips

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp smoked salt [I used an applewood-smoked salt]

1 T  sweet paprika

1 tsp corriander seeds

1 tsp brown sugar

1-1/2 tsp yellow mustard seeds

1-1/2 tsp black peppercorns

1 tsp white peppercorns

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp onion powder

1/4 tsp dill seed

3 allspice berries

2 juniper berries

Directions:

Grind the whole spices in a spice grinder and then add the rest of the spices and sugar to the grinder and pulse to mix well.  Transfer to a gallon-sized zip bag with 1/3 cup olive oil and mix well.

Steam the tempeh for 15 minutes to remove its bitterness.  Set aside to cool.   Once cooled, add to the spiced oil in the gallon bag and even coat each piece, gently.  If you need more volume to completely coat all the tempeh pieces, add more oil.  Refrigerate as long as possible up to a few days.  The longer the rub sits upon the tempeh, the deeper the flavors will penetrate.  Gently flip the bag every few hours or so in order to evenly marinate the tempeh.

Brush off any spice clumps that may have formed on the tempeh.  If you do not do this they shall burn in the grill pan.  Place the strips upon a heated grill pan and sear.  Crumble into bite-sized pieces.

 

To assemble the dish you shall need:

1/4 cup crisp sauerkraut per person [I used It’s Alive’s Raw Sauerkraut with Dill]

fresh dill, for garnish

caraway seeds, for garnish

2 sliced green onions, for garnish

Place the cooked pasta on a plate and top with a generous amount of Russian dressing pasta sauce.  Add a layer of tempeh pieces.  Sprinkle with some sauerkraut, caraway seeds, sliced green onion and  fresh dill.

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A couple of weeks ago, Jasmin Singer of Our Hen House, and her partner Mariann Sullivan, shared on Facebook that they were going to begin a 10-day juice cleanse because they felt the need to “reboot” their systems.  Jasmin welcomed any and all to join them in the venture.  Over the course of the following few days, the idea intrigued me more and more because I’d never experienced such a thing.  Having always been somewhat curious about fasting/cleansing, I decided that I’d jump in with both feet and commit to the experience.   

It wasn’t as difficult as I’d imagined it would be.  Yes, I missed hot food and the textural quality of meals, but when I reminded myself that I was treating my body to a rich source of exceptionally digestible phytonutrients, thereby giving my digestive system a breather, things just didn’t seem quite so austere.  It also helped my will-power tremendously to know that I wasn’t alone in the undertaking.  The interesting results were that aside from losing five pounds, there were no physical manifestations that I could detect.  That doesn’t necessarily mean that there weren’t any, I just didn’t experience any of the usual detoxification symptoms such as crankiness, headaches, nausea, dizziness, fatigue or skin blemishes.   I suppose that it could be a testament to just how cleanly we have eaten this past year since we cut out all processed foods and animal products.  I know that I certainly feel better since we embarked upon our own food revolution, and I’m quite sure that Heather does as well.

In one of the last video logs of her juice cleanse, Jasmin remarked that she and Mariann would  like to start incorporating more healthy raw foods into their diets.  From my perspective, this was a fabulous thing to hear because it afforded me the opportunity to thank them, in my own particular way, for allowing me to tag along on the journey, and for all the support and community they provided along the way.  Simply because I didn’t manifest any outward symptoms of a cleansing doesn’t mean that I didn’t learn anything from the experience!  And so, Jasmin and Mariann…I raise my fork to you both in gratitude by dedicating the creation of my very first raw entrée to you.  I wish you and yours good health and vast happiness.

 

Raw Asian Mushroom Stroganoff with Blackberries

I purposefully chose the Asian pear, lemon zest and Brussels sprouts to add sweetness, bitterness and a touch of refreshing acidity, respectively, in order to cut through a very rich mushroom sauce which would otherwise become quite monotonous.   [I never could eat an entire plate of Fettuccine Alfredo for this very reason.]   Adding a variety of textures to a dish is also very important to me when considering ingredients.  The Asian pear “noodles” add a softness that is more familiar when thinking of a “noodle” dish than the interestingly crunchy texture of kelp noodles.  I also chose Brussels sprouts because Jasmin mentioned that Mariann was rather fond of them.  If you don’t share this love of the cruciferous, you could easily substitute with thinly sliced endive.

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

1 bag raw kelp noodles [I used Sea Tangle’s ]

1 cup raw cashews, soaked for at least 2 hours [I put them into a container with water the night before and placed it in the refrigerator]

1 Asian pear, spirally sliced [Alternatively, you could certainly use a vegetable peeler or box shredder to create shreds]

4 Brussels sprouts, cut into a chiffonade

6 dried shiitake mushrooms

2 T ground mushroom powder [I simply took equal parts dried maitake and shiitake mushrooms and ground them into a fine powder using a spice grinder]

2 oz  enoki mushrooms

1 T freshly-squeezed lemon juice

½ tsp lemon zest, plus some for garnish

2 tsp fresh thyme, plus some for garnish

¼ tsp sea salt

⅛ tsp white pepper

1 cup water

1 cup fresh blackberries

crushed red pepper flakes

Directions:

Place the dried shiitake mushrooms into the water and allow to rehydrate for at least 30 minutes.  [You shall be using this soaking water later, so do not discard]  Squeeze out any residual water and reserve.  Remove the stems and then slice into thin strips. 

Drain the cashews and toss into a blender.  Add ¾ cup of the reserved shiitake soaking liquid, lemon juice, lemon zest, thyme, salt and pepper.  Process until smooth.  Add the mushroom powder.  Continue blending until the mixture is silky smooth and creamy. 

Slice the Asian pear into spirals or shreds and place in a bowl containing acidulated water [A good squeeze of lemon juice will do the trick].  Rinse the kelp noodles under cold water to separate.  Place both “noodles “into a colander together and drain well.

Transfer to a large bowl and add the Brussels sprouts, sliced rehydrated shiitakes and enoki mushrooms.  Add as much of the creamy mushroom sauce as you wish and mix well.  [I ended up using a tablespoon per serving]

Garnish with the blackberries, lemon zest, thyme and crushed red pepper.

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This sauce is a wonderfully thick, rich and quick version of  Mexican mole that was inspired by a gift.   Recently, a friend of ours went to Santa Fe, New Mexico and upon her return, she gave us some incredible artisanal drinking chocolate that she had purchased from the Kakawa Chocolate House.  [Thank you, Marti!] 

Later, as I was drinking it, all I could think about was how I could  integrate this savory and spicy chocolate into food.  This sauce was the first thing that came to mind because I love the combination of  pumpkin and chocolate.  The only problem was that I had to wait for more to arrive before I could start tinkering about in the kitchen.  You see,  I had to order more since it had all disappeared.  In order to prevent the problem from reoccuring, I ordered two bags; the chocolate is just that good.

 

Chili Chocolate and Pumpkin Pasta Sauce

Ingredients:

1-15 oz can pureed organic pumpkin [I use Farmer’s Market Organic ]

1 cup hot water

4 dried guajillo peppers, deseeded

4 roma tomatoes

1 onion, halved

4 cloves garlic

¼ tsp cumin

2 tsp dried Mexican oregano

2 tsp no chicken bouillon

2 T Walnut oil

1 ball  Kakawa artisanal chocolate [I used the Chili Chocolate Elixir blend for this]

Salt and pepper to taste

Pumpkin seeds, for garnish

Golden raisins, for garnish

1-15 oz can organic black beans, drained and rinsed, for garnish

Directions:

Place the guajillo chilis in a hot dry pan.  Toast each side, careful not to burn.  Transfer to a bowl and add 1 cup hot water to rehydrate.

To the same hot dry pan, add the onion halves and tomatoes.  Blacken the sides.  Transfer to a blender.  Add the guajillos and soaking liquid, garlic and pumpkin puree.  Process until the sauce is smooth.  Transfer to a pot and bring to a simmer on the stove.

Add the cumin, oregano and bouillon.  Continue to simmer for a few minutes and then add the chocolate.  Reduce heat.   Whisk the chocolate into the sauce.  Cover and let sit as you cook the pasta.  Just prior to serving, add the walnut oil and season with salt and pepper. 

Serve over pasta [I used chewy Udon noodles] and garnish with black beans, pumpkin seeds and golden raisins.

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This is a really quick and easy dinner recipe.  It’s great over a whole grain pasta [quinoa pasta pictured above] or over an Italian sausage style seitan dog in a hoagie bun.  I keep frozen seitan sausages on hand for those times when I just want to relax and not think about what’s for dinner; it’s a great time saver. 

Spicy Peppers and Onions

Ingredients:

1-28 oz can crushed plum tomatoes

6 cloves garlic, sliced

4 green bell peppers, sliced

1 onion, sliced

1 T Creole/Cajun salt-free seasoning [Whichever you prefer, but salt-free is important otherwise it’ll be too salty.]

olive oil

sea salt

freshly-cracked black pepper

fresh basil

Directions:

Drizzle a bit of olive oil into a pan and place over medium heat.  Sauté onion and bell pepper until softened.  Add in the garlic and sauté for a couple more minutes.  Add the tomatoes and Creole seasoning.  Cook for 15 minutes and then taste for salt, pepper and seasoning.  Adjust as necessary. 

Serve this over pasta with or without Italian-style seitan sausages.  Garnish with fresh basil.

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I’d made a batch of Gyros-style seitan and wanted to use it in some traditional Greek-style dishes.  This impulse just happened to coincide with the arrival of a sample of  Teese’s newly revamped stretchy mozzarella-style faux cheese.  So there you have it, Greek-style comfort food was on the menu.  It was absolutely carb coma-inducingly decadent and delicious.

 

Pastitsio

Ingredients:

½ onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 T tomato paste

½ cup red wine

1 28 oz can crushed plum tomatoes

2 bay leaves

1 T dried oregano

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp ground cloves

2 cups ground Greek Gyros Seitan

4 oz Teese Mozzarella Cheese, medium dice

olive oil

1 lb tubular pasta

For the Béchamel:

4 T unbleached whole wheat flour

4 T olive oil

3 cups non-dairy milk [I used So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut milk]

¼ tsp Freshly-grated nutmeg

3 cloves garlic, smashed

4 oz Teese mozzarella cheese, grated

Directions:

Sauté onion in a drizzle of olive oil until softened.  Add garlic and oregano and cook for a few minutes.  Add the tomato paste, stirring it about the pan to ensure that it’s being cooked.  [Canned tomato paste will taste tinny unless you first caramelize it a bit in the pan.]  Add the wine and cook until the alcohol has evaporated.  Add the tomatoes, water, cinnamon, clove and bay leaves.  Cook until the sauce is no longer watery.  Remove the bay leaves and season with salt and pepper.

For the Pasta:

Cook the pasta in salted boiling water about ¾ of the way through.  Drain and toss with some olive oil to prevent sticking.  Set aside. [The pasta will continue to cook once placed in the oven.]

For the béchamel sauce:

Heat the non-dairy milk in a pan and add the crushed garlic and nutmeg to infuse it with their flavors.  In a separate pan, heat the olive oil and flour, whisking the entire time.  Cook for a few minutes to ensure the rawness of the flour has been cooked out and the roux is bubbly.  Carefully pour the heated milk into the roux while whisking.  Add the shredded Teese and bring the béchamel to a simmer to thicken.  Season with salt and pepper.

Pulling it all together:

Preheat oven to 350°.

Mix the tomato sauce with half of the pasta and the ground seitan.  Place into a greased casserole dish.  Randomly add pieces of the diced Teese throughout the layer, using a knife to plant them well into the pasta.  Top with the remainder of the pasta.  Pour the béchamel sauce over the entirety and place into the oven.  Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly and browned on top.

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Borscht Noodle Soup

We picked up some gigantic organic beets the other week while  at the Co-op.   I wanted to put a new spin on a traditional dish and decided that the main beet element of this “borscht” would be a beet root pasta.  It turned out to be a really nice meal though there may be a Russian grandmother out there smacking a computer monitor with a wooden spoon while shouting:  “Nyet, nyet nyet!”

Borscht Noodle Soup

Ingredients:

one recipe Beet Root Pasta

1 leek, sliced thinly

1 T olive oil

2 carrots, sliced into oblong coins

4 cups red potatoes, cut into bite-sized pieces

½ head napa cabbage cut into ¼ inch slices [or any other green you prefer, kale would be nice]

1 large beet, cut into medium dice

¼ cup fresh dill, chopped plus an extra frond for garnishing

2 quarts faux chicken broth

red wine vinegar

vegan sour cream or non-dairy yogurt, for garnish

Dill seeds, for garnish

Directions:

Place diced beets into 2 cups faux chicken broth and simmer until fork-tender.  Drain and transfer to a bowl.  Cover the beets with red wine vinegar and set aside.

Sauté the leek in a stock pot until softened.  Add carrots and potatoes and continue to sauté for a few minutes longer.  Add broth and simmer until the potatoes are fork-tender.  Add cabbage and fresh dill. 

Toss the pasta into boiling water and cook until it floats.  This should take about 2-3 minutes.  Plate the soup in a bowl and add a generous serving of fresh pasta and a few spoonfuls of the vinegar-marinated beets.  Garnish with vegan sour cream, dill seeds and dill fronds.

 

Beet Root Pasta

Ingredients:

½ cup semolina flour

½ cup unbleached white flour

1 tsp walnut oil

¼ cup beet juice

Water

Directions:

[The volume of liquid required to make a smooth and silky pasta dough will vary according to the moisture level and measurement of your flour.  Bearing this in mind, you may or may not need to augment the beet juice with some additional water.]

Place flours and oil into a food processor.  Slowly drizzle the beet juice into the flour with the processor running.  Once the dough pulls off the sides and forms a ball against the center rotor the dough is ready.  Remove the dough and knead a few times.  Form it into a flattened disk and cover with plastic wrap.  Set aside to rest for at least 30 minutes.  You can make this the day ahead and refrigerate.

Once it has rested, run the dough through a pasta machine [I use a hand-cranked model that I picked up for $25.  It was well worth the investment] and lay it upon a clean surface to dry out a little bit.  Cut into linguine-style noodles.  Toss loosely with extra semolina flour so that as it dries further, it will not stick together. 

Cook in salted boiling water for a couple of minutes until it is cooked through.

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Our largest local farmer’s market opened this past week and we ventured down there yesterday to prowl the produce.  The selection is still a bit sparse, given that spring has only just begun, yet we were able to find some interesting things.  The organic apples were gorgeous and crisp, as they should be considering that this is Washington state, and greens abounded.  We found some locally gathered stinging nettles and I couldn’t resist the novelty of them.  I’ve had nettle tea in the past but had never prepared, let alone eaten, a nettle.  The other food that made me stop and consider it was rhubarb.  I’ve always believed that I hated rhubarb because of a rather nasty piece of pie I once had, but I forced myself to gather up some of those gorgeous ruby-colored stalks and hand them to the vendor to purchase.  I knew that I could create something with these fearsome stalks that would be tasty, though I wasn’t sure yet just what that would be.  So there I was with organic Pink Lady apples, stinging nettles, rhubarb and Brussel’s Sprouts.  What to do…what to do?

Savory Rhubarb and Apple Sauce with Nettles

Ingredients:

3 apples, divided [2 grated and one diced]

8 stalks rhubarb [3 cups, sliced]

1 lb nettles* [You could substitute any green.  Spinach would work well.]

10 Brussel’s Sprouts

2 cups unfiltered apple juice

1 T light miso paste

1 tsp chili garlic sauce

salt and pepper, to taste

soba noodles

Directions:

Grate two apples and slice the rhubarb.  Transfer to a non-reactive pot and add in the apple juice.  Simmer until the apple and rhubarb dissolve.  Add in the miso paste and chili garlic sauce. 

Nettles should not be handled by bare hand until they have been cooked when the sting is no longer a worry.  Using gloves and kitchen shears, cut the leaves from the stalks.  Add to a pot of simmering water and cook for 10 minutes.  Drain. 

While the sauce is perking away, slice the Brussel’s sprouts in half and add to a pan containing a drizzle of olive oil.  Pan roast on each side until browned.  Add the diced apple to the pan and roast in the same manner as the sprouts. [If your pan is large enough, you can pan roast the sprouts and apple together.]

When the vegetables are about 5 minutes away from being ready, add the soba noodles to boiling water and cook.

Serve the noodles with the sauce and top with the greens, sprouts and apples.

***

*I can now say,  with amazement, that stinging nettles are my favorite green.  They are incredibly tasty and have a great hearty texture.  It’s no wonder, these greens are 40% protein! 

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