Archive for the ‘Potato’ Category

Roasted Papritots


Paprika is one of those spices that seemingly carries history upon it’s scent.  At least it does for me.  Whenever I breathe in the smokiness of the dried pepper blend, I immediately imagine bazaars teeming with clamourous commerce in exotic eastern locales or dusty dry mediterranean towns sitting within the watchful shadow of boxy castles set upon distant hillsides.  Paprika is a spice that has stories to tell. 

There really isn’t anything simpler or more comforting than a dish of roasted potatoes.  Thing is, simply by adding some spicy hot paprika prior to roasting and a light dusting of lemon zest afterward, this very simple dish is elegantly transformed into the exotically sublime. 


Roasted Papritots


1 lb small red potatoes, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 cup bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces [I used a variety of young bell peppers including red, orange and yellow and cut them into slices.  You could use whichever color you prefer.]

12 garlic cloves

1 tsp finely-grated lemon zest

1 tsp hot paprika

olive oil

sea salt

freshly-cracked black pepper


Preheat oven to 425°F.

Cut potatoes into bite-sized pieces and place into a bowl.  Add the garlic, bell peppers and paprika.  Add a drizzle of olive oil.  Mix well to evenly distribute the paprika.

Transfer to a Silpat-covered or non-stick baking sheet and roast for 40-45  minutes until the potatoes are browned.  Season with salt and pepper.  Garnish with lemon zest.

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There is something really satisfying about roasted potatoes; smothering them with a delicious gravy only heightens the experience.  I was cruising Trader Joe’s the other day and had already plucked some beautiful organic red potatoes and placed them in my basket, when the juice aisle caught my attention.  I knew right away when I saw the black cherry juice that it would be a winner.   I wanted to make a light summertime gravy that would be both sweet and savory and, to my mind,  the deep ruby color would look gorgeous spilling all over the smashed red potatoes.  I love eating with my eyes before I ever indulge my taste buds;  turns out, it was delicious to all senses involved. 


Black Cherry and Caramelized Onion Gravy


2 large onions, sliced thinly

1 cup frozen pearl onions

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup white wine

2 cups black cherry juice

2 cups faux chicken stock

⅓ cup tamari

¼ cup vegan Worcestershire sauce

8 sprigs fresh thyme, plus a few to use as garnish

Olive oil


Sauté the sliced onions in a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat until caramelized [This will take a good 45 minutes or so].  Add the garlic and cook for a couple more minutes.  Add the wine and cook until the wine is nearly evaporated.  Add the cherry juice, faux chicken stock, Worcestershire sauce, tamari, and pearl onions.  Tie the thyme sprigs into a bundle with kitchen twine and toss into the pot.  Simmer over medium low heat until the volume has reduced by about a third to a half, depending upon the consistency you prefer.

I served this over red potatoes that I had tossed lightly in olive oil and roasted for an hour at 400°F.

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Creamy Sunchoke and Potato Soup


4 cups potato, peeled and cut into a large dice

2 cups small peeled sunchokes cut into same sized dice as the potatoes

½ leek + ½ onion, sliced

4 garlic cloves, sliced

3 cup No-Chicken or vegetable broth

⅓ cup non-dairy creamer [I prefer So Delicious Original Coconut Creamer]

½ cup white wine

6 sprigs thyme tied into a bundle

a few grates worth of fresh nutmeg

sea salt

freshly-cracked black pepper

freshly-cracked green peppercorns [For garnish.]

chives [For garnish.]


Place potatoes and sunchokes into a pot of cold water and bring to a simmer.  Cook until fork tender.  Drain. 

Add a drizzle of olive oil to a pan over medium heat and sauté the leek and onion until softened.  Add the garlic and cook for a minute or so then add the white wine and cook until the alcohol has evaporated. 

Transfer to a blender and add the broth and creamer.  Blend until smooth and return to medium heat on the stove.  Add thyme and nutmeg.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste.   Serve garnished with freshly cracked green peppercorns and chives and top with bite-sized of candied tempeh.



Candied Tempeh


1 package tempeh

⅓ cup maple syrup

⅓ cup ponzu sauce without bonito [You could substitute soy sauce.]

1 cup No-Chicken Broth

1 T yellow mustard

3 drops liquid smoke


Combine all wet ingredients in a container or zip lock bag.  Cut tempeh into ½ inch slices.  Cover tempeh with the marinade and let sit overnight in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Remove the tempeh and set aside.  Transfer the marinade to a pot and simmer until it has reduced down enough that the liquid coats the back of a spoon. 

Place the tempeh slices upon a non stick surface [I use a silpat on a baking sheet] that is oven safe.  Glaze the tempeh with half of the reduction and bake for 20-30 minutes, until the glaze bakes onto the tempeh.  Repeat the procedure with the remaining glaze.

Remove from oven and allow it to cool a bit before serving.  [Be careful when removing the tempeh because the candied glaze will be very hot and is very sticky.  It can easily burn your skin if you touch it while screaming hot.]

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A Lighter Mash


Cauliflower and Potato Mash with Roasted Garlic


1/2 head cauliflower, broken into bite-sized florets

3-4 cups potatoes, cut into large cubes [You basically want twice the amount of potato as cauliflower.]

8 cloves roasted garlic [Just wrap in foil with a drizzle of olive oil and roast at 400 degrees for 45 minutes.]

Earth Balance vegan margarine

non-dairy creamer

2 tsp horseradish

a couple of pinches of freshly-grated nutmeg

sea salt

freshly-cracked black pepper


Steam cauliflower until fork tender and transfer to a bowl of ice water;  set aside.  Cover potatoes by an inch with cold water in a pot and bring to a boil.  Cook until fork-tender.  Add the cauliflower to the pot with the potatoes.  When the water regains a boil and the cauliflower is reheated, drain into a colander.  Return to the pot and let the heat evaporate some of the residual water.  Add the roasted garlic, nutmeg, horseradish, margarine and creamer. [I used 1 T margarine and 2 T creamer.  The amounts will depend upon the consistency of your own mash so I would add the creamer last, and a bit at a time,  to determine how much you need for your preparation.  You will need much less creamer than in traditional potatoes because the cauliflower has a higher water content.  If you like a richer mash then use more margarine.]  Mash until you reach a desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.  Garnish with freshly chopped parsley and a pool of mushroom gravy.

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Like many others around the country today, D and I decided to have a more traditional New Year’s Day dinner full of foods that represent luck, prosperity, and comfort.

Colcannon (steamed cabbage, mashed German Butterball Potatoes, unsweetened coconut milk, salt, and pepper)

Braised apples with sautéed kale and currants

Black eyed peas cooked in vegetable stock with mirapoix, bay leaves, and cinnamon stick, with chopped carrot tops for garnish.

Whole wheat cornbread with whole kernel corn and minced serrano peppers

We are happy. We are stuffed. And now, we’re in desperate need of a nap. 😀 Ah, yummy bliss.

Happy New Year everyone!

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