Well, it’s not really a tale, per say…but I liked the title so I’m sticking with it. I don’t think I’ve posted a recipe in a while – here’s two!
I mentioned my Salad Stir-fry a few posts ago. I first came up with it because I had about a ton of baby greens from my CSA that I realized needed to be used the day they needed to be used if I were to save them from going in the trash. I thought they might wilt down nicely in a stir-fry like spinach does, and I thought it might be interesting to make it salad-like, with a combination of hot and cold components and a thickened salad dressing as the sauce. It turned out so well that I just had to make it again in order to perfect it and post the recipe!
(The sauce is based on the Asian Miracle Dressing from Vegan Lunchbox. I tried it pretty much straight up the first time and then tweaked it a bit to better suit the stir-fry.)
2 Tbs peanut oil
1 white onion, diced
2 bulbs of green garlic, bulb minced and shoots sliced, or 2 cloves of regular garlic, minced, plus 3 green onions, green parts only sliced
2 tsp ginger, minced
2 carrots, thinly sliced on the diagonal
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 lb mushrooms (whatever kind you like, quartered or sliced)
1/2 lb frozen shelled edamame, thawed
at least 1/2 lb baby greens or spinach, or a combination
2 Tbs balsamic vinegar
1 Tbs rice vinegar
2 Tbs maple syrup
1 Tbs soy sauce
1/2 tsp dijon mustard
1/2-1 tsp sriracha
1 1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 Tbs cornstarch
cooked brown rice
Whisk all the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
Heat the peanut oil in a wok over medium-high heat. Carefully add the onion and stir-fry for a few minutes. Add the garlic/green onions and ginger and cook for 30 seconds, being careful not to burn. Add the carrots, bell pepper and mushrooms and stir-fry until mushrooms release their juices. Add the edamame and stir to combine. Add the greens by handfuls, stir-frying each addition and adding more greens as there is room until all the greens are wilted.
Whisk the sauce again and add to the wok. Stir-fry until the sauce coats all the ingredients and thickens.
Serve over brown rice, topped with sprouts, cucumber and sesame seeds.
Second is a recipe for Swiss Chard Risotto, which I feel like I’ve been working on forever but really have only made three times. It’s just been very intermitent. I guess it’s not really chard season anymore, but it should still be available in some areas.
To go with my risotto I made some white bean/corn/red pepper cakes. To be perfectly honest, this was from a few weeks ago and I have NO idea how I made them. I know there was flour and breadcrumbs involved, and I baked them, and they didn’t turn out as firm as I wanted but for a thrown together patty accompaniment they were just fine.
This recipe was originally included with my CSA newsletter. I followed it exactly the first time, but it lacked a little something. I also had never made risotto, ever, so I was a risotto novice. Here’s my perfected version!
Regular green swiss chard will taste fine, but the risotto will be much prettier with red or rainbow chard.
5 c faux chicken or vegetable broth
2 Tbs olive oil
medium white onion, chopped
1 1/2 c arborio rice
bunch of swiss chard, stems sliced and leaves roughly chopped
1/2 c dry white wine
juice of 1/2 lemon, about 2 Tbs
2-3 Tbs chopped fresh herbs such as dill or parsley, optional
freshly cracked black pepper
In a medium saucepan, bring the broth to a simmer, adding a pinch of salt if the broth is not already salted. Turn down the heat, cover, and keep warm.
Heat the oil in a large, wide pot over medium heat. Add the onion and chard stems and saute until onion is turning translucent, about 6-7 minutes. Add the rice and chard leaves and saute until the chard starts to wilt, about 3 minutes. Add the wine and lemon juice and simmer until absorbed, stirring occasionally, about 2-3 minutes. Add the warm broth one ladle-full at a time, simmering until each addition is completely absorbed and stirring almost constantly. Add the herbs, if using, with the last addition of broth. Cook until the rice is tender and creamy; you may not need to use all of the broth. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.
Lastly, I mention this only because I think it’s a great tip for those trying to reduce their fat intake. I ate the leftover white bean patties on a salad, and I had just read a tip that day on Eat’n Veg’n for a great fat-free dressing – mix dijon mustard and apricot jam or preserves. I’m sure it would be a lot healthier if the preserves were sugar free – mine were not, but I’m at peace with that. The dressing on it’s own tastes very strong, I was almost worried to put it on my salad. But combined with the salad ingredients it mellowed and I liked it a lot. Give it a try!