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Rainbow's Recipes

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    Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette

    This is high in sugar. But a little goes a long way. (I'm hoping my body can continue to handle these little indulgences in small quantities.)

    maple syrup
    balsamic vinegar
    1. Mix together equal parts maple syrup and balsamic vinegar.
    2. Toss with whatever ingredients you want to flavour with this yummy dressing.


      Apple, Walnut, & Spinach Salad

      bowl of salad with apples, walnuts, and spinach

      fresh baby spinach leaves
      olive oil (for frying the apples)
      Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette
      1. core apples, slice thinly
      2. stir fry apple slices in olive oil until soft
      3. shell walnuts
      4. toss cooked apple slices and walnut pieces in the vinaigrette to coat
      5. fill plates with spinach
      6. top with apple-walnut mixture


        Ancient Grains Focaccia

        cookie sheet with focaccia bread topped with tomato, onion, and rosemary


        2 1/4 teaspoons "Quick Rise" instant yeast
        1 1/4 cups very warm water
        1 teaspoon sugar
        1/2 teaspoon salt
        1 cup whole wheat flour + additional if necessary for kneading
        1/2 cup whole grain quinoa flour
        1/2 cup whole grain kamut flour
        1/2 cup whole grain spelt flour
        1/4 cup flax seed meal
        1/4 cup teff
        1 teaspoon dried rosemary
        1 teaspoon dried basil
        1 teaspoon dried oregano
        1 teaspoon dried thyme
        2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil + additional to grease baking sheet


        extra virgin olive oil
        feta cheese
        1. combine yeast with 1 cup whole wheat flour, sugar and salt
        2. stir in very warm (hot to the touch, but not scalding) water
        3. add olive oil, additional flours, and herbs
        4. knead dough for 10 minutes, adding up to 1/2 cup additional whole wheat flour as needed if dough is too sticky
        5. allow dough to rest ten minutes in a warm, draft-free environment
        6. grease a 10 x 15 inch baking sheet with olive oil
        7. gently press dough into baking sheet to fit dimensions of sheet
        8. cover with non-stick parchment paper and a tea towel
        9. allow to rise in a warm, draft-free environment until doubled in size (approximately 30 minutes)
        10. slice tomato and onion
        11. crumble cheese
        12. gently brush surface of dough with olive oil
        13. sprinkle tomato, onion, feta and rosemary over top of dough
        14. bake at 400°F for 15-20 minutes, until lightly browned


          Kale, Barley, & Lentil Stew

          bowl of stew containing kale, barley, lentils, and other vegetables

          This recipe was inspired by the Lentil Soup with Wheat Berries & Kale recipe which is featured as the January 1 supper in The Offical Meal Plan of COOK90 2020. Many of the Epicurious recipes seem to be heavy-handed with the oils and butters to my taste, and fond of seasoning everything with heavy amounts of salt. These are not so much my things. So I halved the amount of oil used in the Epicurious recipe and omitted the added salt. I also threw in some additional vegetables I had lying around to use them up. The result tasted pretty good, although I'd probably increase the amount of curry powder if I made this again, and add in some additional cayenne pepper and maybe some other spices. Also: It's not often that I have extra leeks and fennel lying about, but no matter. Just about any vegetables will do.

          2 large yellow onions
          1 garlic
          carrots (I had a couple handfuls of baby cut carrots)
          fennel (1/2 a bulb, in this case)
          leek (about 1/2 of one)
          1/4 cup olive oil
          1 cup pot barley
          1 cup green lentils
          3-4 teaspoons curry powder
          10 cups water
          2 bunches kale
          1. dice onions, carrots, fennel, and leek
          2. mince garlic with a garlic press
          3. stir fry vegetables in olive oil until soft
          4. add curry powder, barley, and lentils; stir to combine
          5. add water, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer
          6. remove stems and large, central rib from the kale
          7. tear kale leaves into small pieces; add to the pot
          8. simmer stew until most of the water has been absorbed and the barley and lentils are tender (~ 30 minutes total simmering time, I think, but I did not put a clock on it)



            8 cups milk
            3-4 Tablespoons lemon juice
            1. Place milk in a large pot and heat gently, stirring to prevent scalding, almost to boiling.
            2. Remove from heat and add lemon juice, one tablespoon at a time, stirring well after each addition.
            3. Once the curds start to separate out, stop adding lemon juice and continue to stir for 4-5 minutes.
            4. Line a large sieve with four layers of cheesecloth, then strain the milk mixture through the cheesecloth.
            5. Tie sides of cheesecloth up around the curds to form a bag.
            6. Place bag of curds on a large flat-bottomed plate.
            7. Place a second plate on top of curds and weigh down with a heavy weight. (I use a couple of wood grenades because that's the sort of crazy thing I have lying about in my kitchen.)
            8. Press cheese until it is firm and rubbery (about 4 hours), periodically draining off any liquid which accumulates on the bottom plate.
            9. Remove paneer from cheesecloth and use in your favourite recipes.


              Cheese Latkes

              plate of three cheese latkes, topped with raspberries and chopped walnuts

              3 eggs
              1 cup ricotta cheese
              3/4 cup flour
              1/2 teaspoon baking powder
              olive oil (a tiny amount to grease pan for frying)
              1. beat eggs
              2. add cheese, flour, and baking powder, and mix all ingredients together well
              3. lightly grease a frying pan (these latkes will slide around easily on just a tiny coating of oil)
              4. heat greased pan over medium heat
              5. dollop large spoonfuls of batter into the hot pan
              6. fry latkes for ~ 2 minutes, until their undersides are golden brown (reduce heat if the latkes are browning too quickly)
              7. flip latkes over and continue cooking until the second side is browned and the latkes are cooked through
              8. serve immediately, topped with fresh fruit and nuts (or other toppings of your choice)


                Baked Paneer & Greens with Curried Chickpeas

                bowl of paneer and greens with curried chickpeas, garnished with yogourt

                This is another dish inspired by a recipe in Epicurious' COOK90 meal plan. As with the previous recipe I adapted from this source, I reduced the amounts of oil and salt and increased the amount and variety of other flavours. I love me a light sprinkling of feta cheese. But holy heart attack, Batman! The amount the original recipe calls for is just frightening. (And the OP calls for an additional 2 teaspoons of salt to be added on top of what's in the cheese!) So I used homemade paneer instead. Paneer holds its shape when heated, so baking this dish didn't really serve any purpose other than to keep the cheese and greens warm while I cooked the chickpeas. But this is still an important purpose, and I think cooking the greens and the chickpeas separately did speed up the overall cooking time. So I stuck with the methodology of the original recipe.

                olive oil for stir-frying
                2 large yellow onions
                2 bunches dark, leafy greens (I had success with 1 bunch of red kale and 1 of Swiss chard)
                2 teaspoons turmeric
                1 teaspoon cayenne
                1/2 cup tomato sauce*
                a handful of cherry tomatoes*
                1 cup water*
                1 quantity of paneer
                1 garlic
                1 can (540 ml) no-salt-added chickpeas
                1/2 cup Greek style yogourt
                freshly squeezed lemon juice

                * NOTE: I had some leftover tomato sauce in the refrigerator from making pizzas last week, and only a handful of fresh tomatoes. So this is what I used in this receipe. But I was just using what I had on hand. The recipe could easily be made with more fresh tomatoes and less or no sauce, and the amount of added water adjusted accordingly.
                1. preheat oven to 350°F
                2. peel and slice onions
                3. remove stems and hard central ribs from greens
                4. peel and mince garlic with a garlic press
                5. drain and rinse chickpeas
                6. stir fry onions in olive oil until soft
                7. add leafy greens to the pan, a few handfuls at a time (allowing earlier additions to wilt down to make room for the next addition)
                8. add cayenne pepper and 1 teaspoon turmeric
                9. add tomatoes, tomato sauce (if using), and approximately 1 cup of water (you're not trying to make a soup here--just add enough water to ensure everything gets wet enough to mix the flavours together)
                10. mix everything together well and cook for a few minutes to enable flavours to blend (if you added too much water in step 9, just cook for a bit longer here to boil some of it off)
                11. transfer greens mixture to a casserole dish (I used a 6 x 10"/15 x 25 cm rectangular dish)
                12. cut paneer into cubes and layer the cheese over the greens
                13. place greens & cheese in the oven to bake while you prepare the chickpeas
                14. stir fry minced garlic in olive oil
                15. add chickpeas and 1 teaspoon turmeric, continue to stir fry until the flavours have blended and the chickpeas are heated through
                16. mix together lemon juice and yogourt
                17. sprinkle chickpeas over top of greens and cheese mixture
                18. garnish with lemon yogourt and enjoy


                  Cranberry Orange Chai Quinoa

                  a bowl of quinoa, topped with cranberry sauce, orange segments, and sliced almonds


                  1 cup quinoa*
                  2.5 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or other "milk" of choice)
                  1/2 teaspoon cardamom
                  1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
                  1/2 teaspoon ginger
                  1/2 teaspoon cloves

                  * NOTE: The quinoa I used for this recipe was pre-rinsed. For quinoa that has not been pre-rinsed, I recommend soaking it for 15 minutes, then rinsing it well, before using it in this recipe.


                  Orange Cranberry Sauce
                  clementine and/or additional fruits
                  1. combine all ingredients for the quinoa in a pot
                  2. bring to a boil
                  3. reduce heat and simmer until liquid is absorbed into the quinoa (12-15 minutes)
                  4. shell and chop almonds
                  5. peel and segment clementine, prepare any additional fruits as necessary
                  6. serve quinoa warm, topped with warm cranberry sauce, fruit, and nuts


                    Oatmeal Apple Spice Muffins

                    3 cups quick oats
                    1 teaspoon baking powder
                    1 teaspoon cinnamon
                    1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
                    1/2 teaspoon allspice
                    1/2 teaspoon cardamom
                    1/2 teaspoon cloves
                    2 eggs
                    1.5 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or other dairy or nut milk of choice)
                    1 Tablespoon olive oil
                    1 cup applesauce*
                    1 large apple
                    * To make your own applesauce:

                    1. peel, core, and dice some apples
                    2. put them in a pan with a bit of water (the amount doesn't matter all that much--so long as it's enough to get the apples started cooking and prevent the raw apples from sticking to/burning on the bottom of the pan, any excess water can be boiled off later)
                    3. season with spices of your choice (I like to use Chinese Five Spice mix, but I have in the past made applesauce with a seasoning blend called "Dragon Rub" which contained lemongrass, ginger, garlic, cinnamon, star anise, cloves, lime peel, green onion, cilantro, turmeric, red pepper, and sesame seeds--I may need to try making this spice blend myself, because it was delicious!)
                    4. bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until the apples have broken down and the desired sauce consistency has been achieved

                    To make the muffins:

                    1. combine dry ingredients in a large bowl
                    2. beat the eggs in a second bowl
                    3. add the milk, oil, and applesauce to the eggs and mix together
                    4. add the wet ingredients to the dry and incorporate well
                    5. core and dice the apple, then mix it into the batter
                    6. prepare your muffin tin (grease, flour, line, etc. as you prefer--I have been lining mine with reusable silicone muffin cups which are pretty much da bomb. Smear them with a bit of olive oil, and they're good to go. Nothing sticks, and clean up is a breeze.)
                    7. fill muffin cups with the batter (should be enough to fill 12 large cups)
                    8. bake at 350°F for ~ 20 minutes



                      olive oil (for stir frying)
                      tomatoes (I usually use a large can of no-salt-added diced stewed tomatoes)
                      salad greens (optional--I throw in whatever I want to use up)
                      crushed chili peppers, basil, oregano, thyme
                      freshly grated Parmesan cheese
                      1. peel and mince garlic
                      2. peel and slice onions
                      3. dice other vegetables
                      4. heat olive oil in large, deep frying pan
                      5. stir fry garlic and onions until soft
                      6. add eggplant and zucchini and continue to stir fry until the vegetables soften
                      7. add tomatoes, along with their juice; bring stew to a boil
                      8. season generously with hot peppers and herbs
                      9. simmer stew for a while, adding the salad greens, if using, during the final 15 minutes
                      10. serve hot, topped with freshly grated Parmesan


                        Rosemary Roasted Beets

                        baking dish full of roasted beetroot, dressed with fresh rosemary leaves

                        2 lbs. fresh beetroot (I used a mix of red, golden, and "candy cane")
                        sprigs of fresh rosemary
                        2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
                        2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
                        1. pre-heat oven to 425°F
                        2. scrub beets, top and tail them, and dice them
                        3. place diced beets in a casserole dish or lasagna pan
                        4. scatter fresh rosemary leaves over top of the beets
                        5. drizzle with oil and vinegar, then toss to evenly coat
                        6. cover dish, and bake for 30 minutes, or until beets can be pierced easily with a fork
                        7. enjoy hot or cold


                          Spicy Peanut Dressing

                          I used a large, juicy lime to make this dressing. At first I thought I had far too much lime juice, but it actually worked very well as a salad dressing. (If I was making a peanut sauce to use as a satay sauce, however, I probably would reduce the amount of lime.)

                          a bowl of peanut sauce

                          4 Tablespoons pure peanut butter
                          1 Tablespoon toasted sesame oil
                          1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
                          1" piece of ginger root
                          juice of 1 lime
                          1 Tablespoon sesame seeds
                          1/2 teaspoon powdered cayenne pepper
                          1. peel and mince the ginger
                          2. mix all ingredients together until well blended
                          3. use as dip or dressing


                            Crunchy Chicken Salad

                            a bowl of chicken and vegetables tossed together in a salad

                            napa cabbage
                            red cabbage
                            red pepper
                            baby corn (canned)
                            cooked chicken
                            Spicy Peanut Dressing
                            1. drain and rinse the corn
                            2. slice veggies and chicken into bite-sized pieces
                            3. coarsely chop peanuts
                            4. toss vegetables and chicken together
                            5. drizzle dressing over the salad
                            6. sprinkle peanuts on top


                              Cauliflower & Red Lentil Curry

                              a bowl of vegetable curry

                              1 garlic
                              2 yellow onions
                              1 lb. julienned carrots
                              1 tsp. cayenne pepper
                              1 tsp. turmeric
                              1/2 tsp. cumin
                              1 can (796 ml) no-salt-added diced stewed tomatoes
                              1 can (540 ml) no-salt-added chick peas
                              4 cups no-salt-added vegetable broth
                              2 cups red lentils
                              1 cauliflower
                              olive oil for stir-frying
                              no fat plain Greek yogourt for garnish
                              fresh cilantro for garnish
                              1. peel and mince garlic
                              2. peel and slice onions
                              3. in a large, deep pan, stir fry garlic and onions in olive oil until soft
                              4. add julienned carrots and continue to stir fry until carrots start to soften
                              5. add ground spices, tomatoes, chick peas, broth, and lentils; stir everything together and bring to a boil
                              6. simmer the stew for 20 minutes, meanwhile, break the cauliflower into small florets
                              7. add the cauliflower to the stew and continue to simmer for a further 10 minutes
                              8. serve stew hot, garnished with yogourt and cilantro


                                100% Whole Wheat Baguette

                                3 - 3.5 cups whole wheat flour
                                2 teaspoons quick rise yeast
                                1 teaspoon salt
                                1.5 cups hot tap water
                                2 Tablespoons raw liquid honey
                                1. combine yeast with salt and 2 cups flour
                                2. stir in very warm water
                                3. add honey and mix in well
                                4. mix in the 3rd cup of flour
                                5. knead dough for 10-15 minutes, adding up to an additional 1/2 cup of flour as necessary if the dough becomes too sticky
                                6. shape dough into a ball, place in a greased bowl smooth side up, cover with a towel, and set in a warm place (I usually use my oven with the interior light turned on, if available) to rest for 10 minutes
                                7. turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, fold dough ball in half to press the gas out of it, then fold in half again in the perpendicular direction. shape dough into a ball again and place back in the bowl, with the smooth side up. return to the warm spot to rise for 90 minutes (dough should double in size)
                                8. after 90 minutes, turn dough out onto floured surface again and press it into a rectangular shape with your fingers
                                9. folding lengthwise along the rectangle, fold over 1/3 of the dough, then fold the folded 2/3 again over the final third, tuck ends of the sausage under to form a nice, smooth shape
                                10. place a tea towel on a cookie sheet, lightly dust with whole wheat flour, place the loaf on top and cover loosely with edges of the towel, place back in the warm place to rise for 20 minutes
                                11. once again, flip the dough out onto a floured surface and press down into a rectangle with your fingers
                                12. this time, fold over 1/4 of the dough, then fold the folded half again, and finally, fold the folded portion a third time to complete the sausage shape. tuck under the ends, then flip the loaf over and roll the seam over itself, pinching it shut along the whole length of the loaf
                                13. put the loaf back on the lightly dusted tea towel on the cookie sheet, cover the loaf with the towel, and return it to the warm place to rise for another 50 minutes
                                14. once the loaf has finished proofing, remove it from the oven (if that's where you were proofing it), and heat the oven to 425°F
                                15. remove the loaf from the towel and place it directly on the cookie sheet, seam side down
                                16. place the cookie sheet with the loaf on the top shelf in the hot oven. place an ovenproof pan filled with water on the lower shelf
                                17. bake for ~ 30 minutes