Monday, February 21, 2011

Chorizo-Vegetable and Kale Soup

There is nothing original here, just the chorizo on display. I have made Portuguese Kale Soup before, but this time I simply left all the veggies in tact, and did not puree, along with using a chicken stock for the base. Hubby likes his soup rustic.

We had another blanket of snow on the ground this its soup time!

Also I have posted a homemade Chorizo recipe on here before, so you simply take the meat and make small disk and grill them to a slight char, then add some to the broth and vegetables to help flavor it. The kale will hold its shape, but cut it into small pieces.

Garnish with more grilled Chorizo pieces when serving, but of course be careful. Mine is a bit spicy, and if your guest are not into that sort of thing, back off using it for the soup base.

Confession, I will be eating soups like this... all year long.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Tandoori Seafood Feast!

Yes it was a feast, because I ate way too many shrimps for my own good!

I selected this recipe for the 'Stick To Your Ribs' recipe exchange for my facebook group. Also my trainer, Brian and I talked about what we were making Friday, he gave me the idea for this meal.

First I preheat oven to 375 degrees, and then I prepared some basmati rice with a cilantro pesto- cilantro, onion, garlic, oil, and lime juice. Saute 1/4 cup onion in oil, add 2 3/4 cups water or veggie stock, boil. Add 1 1/4 cup basmati rice and pesto, cook about 15 or so minutes on medium heat with tight lid on. Remove from heat, let sit 5 minutes or so, then fluff rice.

Tandoori powder (2 1/2 T) mixed with oil and orange juice (traditional, lime). Mix with yogurt (2/3 C) and marinate shrimp and scallops (separate, as cooking time will vary) for an hour. Top off with cilantro, and I added some Aleppo pepper. I bought medium spice tandoori powder, and it was not hot enough. Give the seafood space to allow heat to cook at a faster time. You do not want to over cook them either. Bake 375 degree oven for 12 to 15 minutes. Once you pull them out, they will continue to cook, so plate immediately. How do you know the seafood is cooked? Trust me, you do not want to over cook them.

Served over mix green and mache salad. Orange Raita is 1 orange- segments, orange juice of one small clementine, 2/3 cup yogurt, 1/2 onion- small slivers, 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, some small chopped tomato pieces, 1/4 cup oil, 1 clove garlic- finely chopped, pinch of salt. Stir and let sit about an hour before serving. Some might throw a pinch of sugar into the mixture, since I found the oranges I bought this time of year to be a bit bitter/sour. I found after it sat in yogurt, the mixture worked beautifully with the spice of the tandoori.

This was our Valentines meal part one. Next, Lamb Loin Roast with Tandoori...I opted not to have it all in one night, and I am glad; it would have been way to heavy, and I am off to the gym to a TRX class.

Happy Valentines to you and yours, and if you do not have one- take yourself out, or prepare a special meal just for you!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Traditional 'Spain' Gazpacho

Not sure I should be posting this with all the cold and snow, but I have so many posts left from our trip in September. Oh how I still long for Spain. I still feel the sunshine on my face as we sat in the open air cafes...

Once we arrived in Segovia we ate at a small cafe outside our hotel, and had a great view of the Roman Aqueduct that still stands strong in the city center.  One of my favorite meals to eat is Gazpacho. I had read that our version was nothing like their Spanish cold tomato soup.

I ask the waiter if he could tell me how they make it, and in his English he said it was a pheasant food by tradition and so simple to make. Okay, he did not tell me, but it was plain to see.

One of my 'Food Around The World' cookbooks said this basic version of gazpacho is the one most prevalent in Spain. One taste and you will feel as if you are in the countryside surrounded by olive trees, red tiled roofs and good wine.

Traditional Spanish Gazpacho

10 oz of bread
21 oz. of tomato
2 cloves of garlic
2 onions
2 red and green peppers
1 cucumber (optional)
7 tablespoons of oil
2 tablespoons of vinegar
1½ tablespoon of water
Cumin (optional)

In a big mortar mash the cumin, the garlic and the soaked bread, in a plastic bowl mix the chopped onion, the chopped tomato, the oil, the vinegar, the salt and the contents of the mortar, mash it with the mixer and add very cold water to mix everything. Add salt and strain it. Keep it in the fridge until served.

Serve with the tomato, the cucumber, the pepper and the toasted bread (small dice).