SALAD DAYS

Posted December 7, 2011 by jbdowse
Categories: food

This fall I’ve been making green salads frequently, iterating a particular mixture that I will now Share With You. The vinaigrette dressing has remained fairly consistent but the veggies have varied depending on what I have on hand. This is an addictively tasty salad. I can just keep eating and eating it and before I know it most of the big bowl is gone. First, the vinaigrette ingredients, which I combine in a jar so that I can shake it to emulsify them and have enough for multiple salad batches:

  • olive oil
  • vinegar (I like white vinegar best, weirdly, but use whatever you enjoy; I added a little balsamic this last time and that was good)
  • soy sauce
  • lemon juice
  • black pepper

I don’t have the proportions down to a science, but offhand I’d suggest approximately equal amounts of oil and vinegar, and then less soy sauce and lemon juice, and plenty of pepper. I just taste-test the dressing after I initially assemble it and then add more of any ingredient that’s lacking. As a garnish, I’ve been using

  • OLIVES,

any kind you like, finely chopped. I love adding some brine from the olives to the dressing too. Other possibilities for inclusion in the dressing or for a separate garnish include garlic, cheese (e.g. feta), and, if you want some sizzle, red pepper.

Then, here are the veggies I’ve put in (at various times, not ever all at once, what do you think I am, some crazy maximalist?). I chop all the greens into more bite-size pieces, say ~1″ strips. This is just to give you starting ideas — you can pick and choose and modify as you like:

  • cilantro: I aDoRe cilantro and it comes in such big batches at Shaw’s that it’s hard to use it all before it goes bad, so I put a lot of it in the salad. Chop it up in approx. 1/2″ lengths, and definitely keep the stems — I actually like the stems better than the leaves for salad because they’ve got the great cilantro flavor and have a nice juicy crunch as well.
  • lettuce
  • red cabbage — I really like including this for its crunch and sweetness, but make sure to chop it relatively fine since it’s tougher than the other greens.
  • spinach
  • endive
  • mizuna
  • radicchio
  • dandelion greens
  • chard?
  • komatsuna
  • baby kale
  • cuke, sliced thin and quartered
  • (July 2012 addenda:) amaranth greens
  • water spinach
  • radish greens
  • turnip greens.

There may be other veggies that I’ve missed here. To put the salad together, just, you know, put the veggies in a bowl, garnish them as desired, and mix it all together with a good amount of the dressing. I find that the dressing helps the greens stick together and thereby take up less space, so if you’re having trouble fitting stuff in the bowl, try mixing some dressing in as you go along.

I would say that the characteristic tastes that I really like in this thing come from the LEMON JUICE, the SOY SAUCE, the OLIVES, and the CILANTRO. Switch too many of those out and you have a fundamentally different salad on your hands/in your bowl, though it could be just as delicious. Hope you enjoy getting addicted to this salad and getting INCREDIBLY HEALTHY, suckas.

Best soup of 2k11/evr?

Posted January 22, 2011 by jbdowse
Categories: food

It’s 2k11 yall! Are u 'riding some chill 2k11 wavves'?
I am b/c I just cooked up a new soup and feel like I really 'hit a home run' / 'hit it out of the park' on this 1 [via baseball meta4s]
Feel like it raises my personal soup brand '2 the next level'
I know it’s similar 2 the soup I wrote abt 12 months ago, but @ the same time it’s 'so much more'
Rlly feel like it could make the Bronadnock Region a relevant alt center 4 culinary gr8ness
Think it could eclipse James Blake and Panda Bro 4 'best album of 2k11' [via tasting so good that it makes ppl imagine the most beautiful music they will evr hear]
Vibing pretty hard 2 this new soup, yall.

Here’s the recipe if u want 2 'ride the soupwaves' urself.

CURRY EGG-DROP SOUP [via pan-azn vibes]
1. Heat up some water
2. Chop up veggies and 'add them 2 the pot':
– onion
– celery
– shrooms
– potatoes
– anything u deem tasty [via generosity of spirit on the part of Curry Egg-Drop Soup]
3. Add salt '2 taste' + the following spices
– turmeric
– coriander
– cumin
– ginger
– garlic (fresh or powder)
4. Crack open some eggs in2 a small bowl, mix them up in2 a 'uni4m consistency' (maybe abt 1 egg per 2 cups water, am not 'fully confident abt my egg-2-water ratios')
5. Make sure the water is boiling. While stirring the soup, drop the eggs in2 it, keep stirring as the eggs become 'opaque' / 'stringy'
6. Keep cooking till the textures of all the veggies r 'as u like it'
7. Serve 2 urself/soon-2-be adoring CEDS fans

Do u feel the urge 2 'blog abt soup' when u 'make some tasty soup'?
What kinds of soup are 'most blog-worthy'?
Is soup 'the best food' / 'actually a drink'?
Is soup art?
Is Curry Egg-Drop Soup the 'Merriweather Post Pavilion of 2k11 (& soup)' [via winning the year @ the outset]?
Will Curry Egg-Drop Soup rescue alt music/life in 2k11 / the 2kteens decade?
Is 'plagiarizing Carles’s personal writing brand' totes lamestream @ this point or is it still 'an understandable desire' / 'charming' [via sincerest 4m of flattery]?

MEXICO

Posted July 19, 2010 by jbdowse
Categories: food

In honor of the utilitarian, delicious, and super-cheap restaurant Las Cuatro Milpas in Barrio Logan, San Diego, where I ate rice and beans with two tortillas (all cooked in delicious lard, so I was playing fast & loose with vegetarianism) and extreme hot sauce and huge quantities of cilantro basically every weekday of June during my summer urban design studio, tonight my dad and I cooked a rice/beans/pico-de-gallo thing, which follows:

RICE
I used a cup of brown short-grain rice and a half cup of brown long-grain rice, mixed together, as that was what was on hand; just the usual preparation, a teense more than twice as much water as rice, etc etc.

PICO DE GALLO-ISH
My dad chopped up a bunch of veggies on hand: red & green bell peppers, a little bit of onion (didn’t want the mix to be too throat-scratchy), and cuke, and then mixed in some commercial salsa and a little bit of pasta sauce, not so much that the fresh veg were swimming in them.

BEANS
1. Saute some chopped onion with salt in olive oil at the bottom of a pot
2. Dump in a can of black beans and a can of black-eyed peas (or whatever you want, that’s what I used)
3. Chop up some manzanilla olives somewhat finely and dump ’em in — this was the operative ingredient, lending a nice little bit of tartness to things
4. Other seasonings: black pepper, cayenne pepper, coriander, all to taste

CHEEZ
I grated parmesan and xtra-sharp cheddar, both finely, mixed together in a bowl, for topping things.

I would recommend a pile of cilantro, which we didn’t have; that’s why I used coriander in the beans, since they’re the same plant, even though they’re totally different flavors. IT’S A COPING MECHANISM.

The pico de gallo can be served on the side or mixed in with the beans & rice, whatever you want.

P.S. Definitely go to Las Cuatro Milpas if yr in San Diego; it’s open for lunch (opens in the morning sometime, closes at 3) and it’s located here. If you’re strictly vegetarian, i.e. no lard, yr out of luck, but if you’re being flexible as I was, I recommend the rice and beans. The small size is already super-filling, so unless you want leftovers, don’t get the large. If you are omnivorous, get the rice & beans with chorizo mixed in, as that is the crowning glory of Milpas, according to consensus among my fellow pilgrims. One cup of the hot sauce will easily serve several people. It really is super-cheap: $3 or $3.5 for the rice and beans sans chorizo, $3.5 or $4 for with (sorry I forgot already, Milpas), for a nap-inducing amount of substance. Here is an article I just found about Milpas with some interesting background that I hadn’t known about.

HEARTY EGG DROP SOUP, BROWNING-STYLE

Posted January 10, 2010 by jbdowse
Categories: food

IT’S A NEW DECADE AND IT FOLLOWS THAT IT IS TIME FOR A NEW RECIPE

These quantities are a little bit approximate because, as usual, this was improvised.

INGREDIENCE

  • 2 qt water
  • 1 bouillon cube (I used vegetable bouillon because ask Morrissey about it)
  • olive oil
  • 2 small tates or one large one
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 1-2 small onions or up to 1 big one
  • 3 eggs
  • mustard powder
  • cayenne pepper
  • coriander
  • salt

INSTRUCTOHS

  1. Get the water het up in a pot (should be boiling when the eggs go in at the end).
  2. Put the bouillon cube in and stir it around, or not. Whatever.
  3. Chop up the celery and carrot(s) at a size you like and dump ’em in.
  4. While the pot is getting cozy, chop up the potatoes (I used somewhat wide and thin slices, which stuck together in the pan, so I’d suggest something a bit finer) and use a pan to sauté them in olive oil till they’ve started on some delicious browning, i.e. at least till they’ve gotten to a golden color. I also put salt and mustard powder in the sauté and so can you if you want.
  5. Once the tates are in a golden state, dump ’em into the pot. The browning flavor will diffuse through the broth: awesome.
  6. Similar with the onion(s): chop/slice them to a desirable fineness and sauté them in olive oil (and maybe salt and whatever else you want), ideally until golden, at which point dump ’em in the pot. More browning, more diffusion, more awesome. I lost patience here and put them in the soup after they’d softened and translucentated but before they really browned at all, but I bet it’s worth it to wait for the browning.
  7. Crack open the three eggs into a dish and stir them up to a more-or-less uniform scramble.
  8. Make sure the soup is boiling; when it is, while stirring the soup, pour the egg scramble in at a slowish rate, so that it’s shredded up before it solidifies from the heat.
  9. Add salt and the other seasonings, or ones of your own choosing, to taste. I used cayenne for some bite, coriander for tartness, and mustard powder for tart bite, in order to complement the richness of the other flavors.
  10. Serve and, if you did it right, enjoy.

INTENSE FRICKIN CHILI

Posted December 20, 2009 by jbdowse
Categories: food

IT’S BEEN TWO YEARS! TIME TO TURN THE HEAT BACK UP AND TELL THE WORLD ABOUT CHILI

FIRST

CHOP TWO ONIONS AS IF DESTROYING EVIDENCE

IN A LARGE COOKING POT
SAUTEE THE HOPES AND DREAMS OUT OF:
THE CHOPPED-APART ONIONS
3 VANQUISHED CLOVES OF GARLIC
IN OLIVE OIL
FOR A FEW MINUTES

THEN

CRAM IN EVERYTHING ELSE:
28 OUNCES OF DICED TOMATOES
28 OUNCES OF CRUSHED TOMATOES
BETWEEN 3 AND 26 CANS OF KIDNEY BEANS
3 TSP OF CHILI POWDER (7 TSP IF YR NOT A SISSY)
1 TSP OF CUMIN
1 TSP OF RED PEPPER FLAKES (THE WHOLE BOTTLE)
SALT TO TASTE (DRINK A 40 [FASTER!], FILL THE BOTTLE WITH SALT, DUMP IT ALL IN THERE)

SIMMER INTENSELY FOR DAYS

EAT IT ALL IN ONE GO BEFORE IT STOPS BOILING, GET IT IN YR EYES, SHOW YR ESOPHAGUS WHO’S BOSS (SHOW YR COLON WHO’S BOSS SOON AFTERWARD)

Fluffy Compromise Brownies

Posted December 23, 2007 by jbdowse
Categories: food

These sort of split the difference between this vegan brownies recipe, which was my jumping-off point for the numerous vegan brownie explorations I’ve done, and this non-vegan brownies recipe.

Preheat th’oven to 350F. Add these things to a (floured? I didn’t try this; also my pan is nonstick so I didn’t grease it; if yours isn’t, grease it before flouring it. I don’t know whether mixing things straight up in the pan will cancel out these preparatory actions, but they seem worthwhile, as the brownies tended to stick to the pan as I made them) pan in this order:

  1. 1 cup canola
  2. 2 cups sugar
  3. 1 tsp vanilla
  4. 2 eggs
  5. 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  6. Then mix those things all together. Add:

  7. 1 cup water
  8. and mix it in. Add:

  9. 1 1/2 cups flour
  10. 1/2 tsp baking powder
  11. and mix them in. Put the pan in th’oven and check on it after 30 min, and take it out once, you know, once it seems done. Delicious.

Winter Veggie-Pile

Posted December 21, 2007 by jbdowse
Categories: food

I don’t know what else to call it right now. It’s another one of my sautés.

  1. Sizzle up some olive oil.
  2. Add to the pan in this order:
    1. 1 chopped leek
    2. 1 to 2 chopped portabellas or the equivalent
    3. a bunch of sliced-up red cabbage
    4. a handful of sliced almonds
    5. 1 can of chickpeas
  3. Add more oil as necessary throughout the cookage. Seasonings I used, modify as you like:
    1. Soy sauce
    2. Black pepper
    3. Chili powder
    4. Tarragon
    5. Nutmeg
    6. Sesame oil
    7. A handful of wheat germ (thickens it up and wholens the grain, as I had it on white rice)
  4. Serve over rice, pasta, or whatever kind of starchy-starch you enjoy. Makes approximately 1 buttload.

Note that this dish is vegan. You will be surprised how bloated your stomach will feel despite this if you eat a bunch of it like I just did.