A few friends and family members have pointed out that I have been remiss in posting to the blog as of late. True enough. As it turns out, I don’t like sitting in front of my computer half as much in the summer as I do in the cooler months of the year. It also seems that when I’m not taking or teaching classes, I have far less reason to sit in front of my computer at all, which leads me to believe that this whole blog is just a great way for me to procrastinate from all of those educational endeavors.
Well, so be it. Summer classes started this week and what a coincidence – I have a recipe to blog about (and some lesson planning to do, but clearly my priorities are once again in line)! I actually conjured this recipe up about a week ago, but to be honest, I wasn’t sure if it was really good or not because I was starving at the time and probably would have found just about anything, food or otherwise, to be delicious. Anyway, today I ate the last of the leftovers for lunch and guess what – I was NOT starving and it IS really tasty! Not bad for a random collection of stuff from my freezer, cupboards and the latest CSA delivery.
Black Bean, Tuna, Kale and Quinoa Salad
2 tuna steaks
1 1/2 c. black beans (I usually use dried beans, not canned, because I can control the salt better and because I just like them better)
1 c. corn
1 bunch kale (this was fresh from the CSA box )
3 green onions (from the CSA box!)
1 c. quinoa
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tomato, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
Step 1: Cook the quinoa. Set aside when done.
Step 2: Mix the spices together. Cut the tuna into bite size pieces and coat with spice mixture. Pan fry in olive oil. Remove tuna and set aside.
Step 3. Add the corn, black beans, onion and remaining spice mixture to the same pan in which you cooked the tuna. Cook until corn is cooked through. Add kale in 3 bunches until it cooks down.
Step 4: Add the cooked quinoa and tuna to the bean mixture.
Lime Mustard Honey Dressing
1/4 c. white wine vinegar
2 green onions, chopped
2 Tbsps. finely chopped cilantro
1/2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. Agave or honey
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger (no dried ginger!! I keep this on hand)
1/2 c. olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together.
Pour the dressing over the quinoa and bean mixture to taste. Top off with avocado and tomato to taste and you’ve got yourself a yummy salad!
Guess who’s done grading papers? Me! Guess who’s done writing papers? Well, almost. I have found that when writing papers, it’s best to sleep on the final draft and correct typos in the morning after a good night’s rest. So I’m almost done. Which means that writing on the blog is no longer a procrastination tool! How novel!
Here’s a recipe for a salad I threw together for a potluck we had for a co-worker last week. It seems the end of the semester brings about the need for a lot of cooking and baking, but not enough time to actually report on the food items. This recipe happened to work well for last week’s potluck because it is both gluten-free and vegan-friendly. The currants add an unexpected burst of sweetness, too. Here it is!
Wild Rice, Adzuki Bean and Veggie Salad
1 c. wild rice (uncooked)
1 c. brown rice (uncooked)
1 c. adzuki beans (uncooked)
1 bunch kale, chopped
1 bunch broccoli, chopped
1 1/2 c. carrots, chopped
1 – 2 Tbsps. veggie broth*
1/3 c. dried currants
Cook rices and beans in separate pots. When cooked through, place in large stock pot. Add chopped vegetables and cover with lid. Cook over low heat until vegetables are steamed (I like my veggies a little on the crunchy side, but not completely raw). Add veggie broth as needed if you need liquid in the rice and veggie mixture.
3 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1/2 c. olive oil
1 Tbsp. chopped garlic
Mix dressing ingredients together. Toss with rice mixture. Add currants and serve hot, cold or at room temperature.
* I have started making my own veggie broth from vegetable scraps that I collect and save in the freezer. Once the bag of scraps is full, I make some broth. Then, I put the broth in ice cube trays and just use a cube or two as needed.
I talked to my mom today and she pointed out that there has been NOTHING posted on my blog in quite a while. True enough. I’ve been a busy gal the past few weeks. I was in Albuquerque, NM for a conference two weekends ago and Madison last weekend for a pre-wedding party for my friend. While in Albuquerque I took a little time to go on a hot air balloon ride which was pretty darn fun. I ate a fair amount of Mexican food in NM (some great tamales in Santa Fe – ooh, and a very delicious Nut Brown Ale at the Blue Corn Cafe) and learned that anchovies, garlic and olives blended together is called – wait for it – tapenade. Hmmm, apparently tapenade is a rarity in NM – see what I learned!!
After the trip to NM and eating out for every meal I really needed a break from baked goods and heavy food. So, I’ve been eating lots of salad and quiche (is quiche light?).
But today, I needed to prepare a dish to pass for my community garden potluck. That’s right, I’m going to be an urban gardener this summer. I was able to get a plot at Eat Street Garden, which is only 2 blocks from my apartment. After meeting the other gardeners today, I’m even more excited. Unbeknownst to me, this garden is owned by a local housing co-op, which of course reminded me of my days living in the co-op in Madison. Of course, I still don’t know what I’m going to plant, but as soon as I wrap up the semester, I will figure that out (my brain can’t handle any more stuff right now, really).
Anyway, back to the potluck. I didn’t have much in fridge or cupboards (which is no shock to some of my family members) but was able to cobble together this quinoa salad. It’s pretty light and packed with nutrients (not that I’m a dietitian, but seems like it’s got to be fairly healthy given the ingredients).
Quinoa and Kale Salad
1 c. dry quinoa
2 tbsp olive oil
1 c. chopped carrots
1/2 c. onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp minced ginger
2 tsp curry powder
1 bunch kale (5 or 6 c., maybe?)
1/3 c. chopped fresh cilantro
1 15oz. can lentils, rinsed and drained
Cook quinoa in 2 c. water. Saute the onion, carrot, garlic and ginger in olive oil for 3 – 5 minutes. Add curry powder and saute another 2 minutes. Add kale and cook 2 or 3 more minutes. Toss quinoa, veggie mixture, cilantro and lentils together in a bowl. Eat warm, at room temperature or cold.