Rainy Sunday eats…

This blog started back in June with the intention of finding ways to connect with my daughters over things we enjoy together, CSA, cooking and food. Hence, the name OOHMOMME. However, as life got busy, somehow the blog just turned to OOH MOM, the ME( my daughters) took a hiatus. But…we’re back together on the blog.

We have been cooking together and enjoying our CSA together but the blog together just wasn’t happening. So, here we are together on  a very rainy Sunday. We now have time to sit and share our fellowship with you. We are back together sharing not one recipe, but, two recipes. It’s your lucky day.  The second recipe will be on the next post.

Rainy Sundays during the fall always bring a sense of yearning for comfort food.  Today, my daughter made a yummy chicken pesto grilled cheese sandwich.  I made a yummy pumpkin dal soup in my Instapot( my favorite kitchen gadget yet) for lunch.  This dal can be eaten alone as a soup or poured over rice or quinoa.  My recipe instructions are for insta pot but the directions would be the same on stove. just watch it as it boils and it would take more time until  fully cooked.

Last week my daughter made the comfiest food of all, pasta. This pasta oozes comfort with peas, truffle oil, genoa salame and soppresata(whatever we had at home), and Parmesan cheese on top… what more says comfort? MMMM, Comfort pantry pasta.

 

Recipe 1 :Instapot Pumpkin Dal

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups yellow split peas(rinsed and drained)
  • 1 cup of pumpkin/acorn squash cut into small chunk( 2 inch pieces) – you can buy frozen, we had fresh from CSA
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp of cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp of mustard seeds( black)
  • 2 serrano peppers( eliminate if you don’t like heat)
  • 2 sprigs of curry leaves, discard stems, just use leaves(optional)
  • salt to taste
  • water- minimum 2 cups
  • 1/2 cup grated coconut(optional)

 

Instructions:

  1. Turn instapot on and click  saute function. (on the stove take a heavy bottomed pan and turn to med high heat).
  2. Add 2-3  tbsp of coconut oil but you could use any other oil.
  3. when oil is hot, add mustard seeds and cumin seeds until they sputter.
  4. Add chopped onions and the 3 garlic cloves chopped.
  5. Stir and 1 tsp of salt to accelerate browning and 2 tsp of turmeric powder.
  6. Stir until onions start to brown. Add cury leaves and serrano peppers( sliced).
  7. Stir while adding pumpkin. Within a few minutes, add the rinsed split yellow peas.
  8. Add water to instapot or pot on stove until the dal is covered. Add another tsp of salt. Stir and click manual on instapot(this should get it to low pressure). Press + to add time until it say 10 minutes).
  9. Close the lid and make sure the pressure valve is facing sealing not venting.
  10. The dal will cook for the next 10 minnutes. Let it nautrally release pressure.
  11. While the dal is cooking, you could puree the grated coconut( I grate in a food processor and freeze and use as needed. You could buy from the store-make sure it’s unsweetened). Puree the coconut with  a bit of water, one garlic clove and a pinch of cumin seeds).
  12. When the dal is completely cooked and the pressure is released, add the grated coconut mixture to the instapot. Close the lid and let everything melt together.
  13. ENJOY as is- a soup! Or pour over rice or other grain. Make a grilled cheese sandwich and dunk away. So many options!

 

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Double Stuff’t Chard Tacos

It has been pouring all day. I love the rain because it makes everything grow like wildfire. Our curry leaves and tomato plants look so refreshed and rejuvenated, like we do after a great workout and shower. But with this downpour comes a sense of nesting. We just want to sit on the sofa and do nothing else but veg. Even cooking seems like an impossible chore.  Rachel and Erica have been busy all day with things to do at school.  On days like this, comfort food is what one craves.  Warm tacos would just give into that  crave.

A few years ago, I would’ve made just that, a  hard taco corn tortilla shell stuffed with ground beef and maybe beans with some lettuce, tomatoes sour cream and cheese. I still love tacos like that, but…. as one gets older.  Isn’t there a saying,  a taco on the lips is a lifetime on the hips? 🙂 In the last few years,  I was asked by a friend to join a workout program. I hesitantly joined and now my life is forever changed. Upon joining, my view on eating has changed drastically. I can talk about fitness journey later but I have learned to enjoy my cheat meals but also learned the art of satisfying my cravings without sabotaging my hard work.

So,  you’ve heard of stuffed cabbage. I’ve even seen collard greens stuffed but never swiss chard. So today, we are having tacos minus the taco shell . The taco shells will be the chard leaves.

VERDICT: So my kids agree that the hard taco shells are more fun to eat but they still loved this. The Greek yogurt was great, they didn’t miss the sour cream. ALL IN ALL, IT WAS A SUCCESS!

Ingredients:

  •  15 oz can of kidney or black beans( same amount dry- soak overnight)
  • 1lb of ground beef /turkey( don’t use if you want it to be vegan)
  • 2 tbsp of CENTO double concentrated tomato paste/2 plum tomatoes/2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 shallot flowers and stems/ one onion)
  • 2 garlic scapes/3 cloves garlic
  • 10 or more swiss chard stems
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2-3 tbsp of taco seasoning( you don’t have to buy this a few things in your pantry make this up, comment or contact me for instructions to make your own, I had some so I used it).
  • EVOO
  • 10-15 swiss chard leaves
  • 1 cup quinoa cooked
  • 1/2 cup of plain Greek yogurt( PERFECT SUBSTITUTE FOR SOUR CREAM)

 

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Place soaked beans in instapot and turn on beans/ chilli. I do this the night before or even 2 days before and then place in fridge and use when needed. So if I used instapot, I may make more and then use beans for other things like rice and beans or huevos rancheros. If using canned beans, don’t need to cook them in advance.
  3. Drizzle 2-3 tbsp of EVOO in saute pan.
  4. Chop onions and garlic( shallot flowers and garlic scapes) and and put into EVOO.
  5. Add a tsp of salt to accelerate browning/softening.
  6. As this mixture softens, add chopped swiss chard stems, if the swiss chard leaves are small, then I add chopped leaves too. The smaller you chop, the quicker it cooks and less it interferes with the taco filling texture.
  7. Once this is softened, add taco seasoning, add more if you like. Add a pinch of salt.( I sometimes add some cumin seeds to Mexican foods, just a bit goes a long way).
  8. Add beans. Stir and saute. You’re done if you’re doing vegan.
  9. If you want meat, add ground beef/turkey and brown.  Taste and salt as needed.
  10. Add quinoa to taco mixture- add more if mixture seems loose.
  11. Spray or coat lasagna pan with EVOO.
  12. Take swiss chard leaf and fill with taco mixture. Roll as best as you can, like an egg roll. Place taco folded side down.
  13. Repeat and finish filling the tray. When done, drizzle the leaves with a bit of EVOO.
  14. Bake for 20 minutes.
  15. Take Greek yogurt, sprinkle with taco seasoning for effort. Drizzle over leaves.(eliminate if you want vegan)
  16. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

Easy like Sunday morning Frittata

In a household with two working parents and kids who seem busier than the adults, easy Sunday mornings are such a treat.   Usually, my husband and I wake up and catch up over chai. This is super special because my husband makes the chai. Some Sunday mornings, we all congregate in our kitchen.  Our kitchen table was made for a family of 3. So in our family of 4, three  people sit and one stands. Not the best way to have a four person conversation. For the last two weeks, Rachel went away to a 2 week pre-college program. It was the first time for her to be away by herself  for an extended period of time. We had a lot to talk about. Today, we all spent the morning chatting and catching up as a family. We all sat on the sofa over chai. What a great way to start the day!

After our leisurely catch up, it was time for breakfast. We needed something quick , filling and nutritious. A frittata is just that! Frittata  is basically a crustless quiche. What you put in a frittata depends on what it is that you have/want. I make a frittata based on ingredients I have on hand. So the ingredients listed are based on what I have from the CSA or what’s in my fridge. It’s really a nutrition packed meal. It’s so easy and filling too. Always make in a cast iron pan. If it’s seasoned correctly, it’s better than non stick and you don’t take the risk of ingesting those harmful non-stick chemicals. It’s a great way to get kids to eat veggies. you can add different types of vegetables, peppers, spinach, mushrooms. Today’s frittata includes kohlrabi, kale and corn. Kohlrabi is a vegetable that was selectively bred by farmers years ago from wild mustard. Crazy to think that one plant could be selectively bred to produce cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts and kohlrabi. The idea of kohlrabi was scary to us. Never ate it , let alone never saw it before our CSA adventures.  According to  Food facts, Kohlrabi is rich in vitamins A, C and K, as well as B-vitamins. It also contains copper, manganese, iron, potassium, dietary fiber and calcium, and is rich in antioxidant compounds like phytochemicals and carotenes as well.Simply put, kohlrabi  tastes like a potato that has a hint of sweetness. Erica loves tortilla española, which is  a Spanish frittata made with potatoes. Substituting potatoes with kohlrabi is a sneaky and creative way to get kids to eat cool foods like kohlrabi. It does taste a bit different from potatoes but not much.

Food always brings families together. Usually we are eating and running.  Sunday morning breakfasts always get us to sit together and connect over that meal. Farm fresh frittata, chai, family, fellowship and love- a perfect Sunday morning.

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 kohlrabi( peeled and chopped) ( optional or use potatoes instead)
  • 1 cup lacinato kale chopped finely
  • 1 small onion ( or two shallot stems the flowers)
  • 1 garlic scape/2 cloves garlic
  • 3 strips of uncured nitrate-free  bacon(optional)
  • 1/2 cup sweet organic corn
  • 4-5 basic leaves finally chopped/julienned(ribbons)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 5-6 eggs beaten
  • paprika- a few dashes for color(optional)

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 365ºF.
  2. In a cast iron pan(there’s no other way to make an amazing frittata) on medium heat on stove. When pan gets hot, place chopped bacon into pan. When fat is rendered,  and bacon is crisp, remove pieces from pan.
  3. You may remove all the bacon fat and cook with EVOO or leave bacon fat to cook the vegetables.{ There are many schools of thought, animal fat should be eliminated. Animal fat consumption should be limited. I am of the second school of thought- limit the consumption. Know how the animals are treated and buy locally.} If you don’t want bacon or its fat, just use EVOO and eliminate bacon altogether.
  4. In the oil/bacon fat, add onions and garlic( shallot flowers and garlic scape). Add two pinches of salt to mixture to accelerate browning.
  5. Next add, chopped kohlrabi and saute( 2-3 minutes).
  6. When browning of kohlrabi has started, add chopped kale. Saute and cook down vegetables.( 3-5 minutes)
  7. Add sweet organic corn, I had in the freezer. I used the corn after defrosting.
  8. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Add paprika( optional).
  10. Add eggs into mixture in cast iron pan. Sprinkle basil , mix in. Sprinkle cooked bacon on top. Turn off heat in 5 minutes.
  11. Place pan into oven for 15 minutes until center of frittata is set( doesn’t jiggle).
  12. ENJOY! ( I like a little hot sauce drizzled over it)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Garden green chicken pasta

It’s a warm summer day, and my nephew has come over to hang out. He is definitely a picky eater. Doesn’t eat alot and is distracted by childhood play.  He loved sushi when he was young. He would always talk about pumpkin sushi. I never tried it but he would rave about it, even at the young age of 3. But despite all this talking about food, he never really ate much or enjoyed eating. Now, he is definitely growing a more refined sophisticated palate but talks about food in a way that makes me think he would try something new and different.

So our task for today is to make a healthy, quick, tasty dish that can satisfy my nephew’s palate and also ours. At home, we prepare meals based on what we have available. We definitely buy items based on what we want to cook. But if I want to make a pasta dish that includes maybe spinach and parmesan but  I only have kale, I’ll substitute. Say I have no parmesan cheese at home but I have Asiago, then that’ll do.  Waste not want not. Ingredients do make the dish and any herbs and spices you add can transform a dish to your liking.

So, using what we had from our weekly Hilltop Hanover Farm share and items in our fridge and pantry… Green garden pesto emerged. We were running low on time and within 20 minutes, lunch was on the table. And by the looks of the bowls, we all LOVED it. Easy, simple,resourceful, yummy!

Ingredients:

  1. Box of whole wheat penne pasta(or any shape you like).
  2. One large garlic scape and one long shallot flower including green stem(sub with two cloves garlic and one shallot).
  3. 4-5 sun dried tomatoes
  4. 5-6 lacinato kale leaves (use any green leaf- spinach is great here)
  5. 1 lb of boneless chicken thighs chopped into 1 inch pieces.
  6. 1/4- 1/2 cup of heavy cream/half half or whole milk
  7. paprika
  8. 1 cup of Asiago cheese( you can sub for parmesan cheese)
  9. fresh oregano( optional)
  10. salt and pepper to taste
  11. olive oil

Instructions:

  1. Boil pasta according to box directions.
  2. Chop sun dried tomatoes into thin strips.
  3. Finely chop garlic scapes and shallot flowers.
  4. Peel the kale leaves off the rib
  5. Roll the leaves together and finely chop the leaves to get a ribbon like appearance.
  6. On a separate cutting board ( you may use the same one if you are done with all the vegetable prepping). cut chicken into 1 inch pieces.
  7. Pour 2-3 tbsp of oil in to pan. Place pan on medium heat on stove. Add shallot flowers and garlic scape to pan and stir to saute.  Add a few pinches of salt.
  8. Add sun dried tomatoes and stir to saute.Add 2 dashes of paprika. This is more for color and a smoky flavor(perfectly optional)
  9. After this is softened, add the chicken to pan.
  10. Saute chicken until is white on the outside and it is more seared . Note: If the pan is not hot enough, the chicken will boil/steam rather than sear.  this should take 5-7 minutes to cook completely.
  11. Add chopped kale, stir for 30 seconds.
  12. Add fresh oregano( optional). You may chop the leaves or just pull some off from stem and throw into dish.
  13. Add 3/4 cup of Asiago cheese. Salt and pepper to taste.
  14. Add milk( If you add cream, you get a thicker sauce). I had milk and so used that.
  15. Add pasta. Stir completely.  Close with lid, place on low-medium heat for another 10 minutes. When done. stir one last time.
  16. Serve pasta dish in bowl and sprinkle some Asiago cheese on top.  Enjoy!

APP Haryali Chicken Curry

The best recipes are the ones you take a risk on and they pay off big time. A CSA farm share can bring an abundance of produce. As I’ve said before, sometimes, you’re like, ” what? more kale, more mizuna…” A food processor can be your best friend.  I showed you last week my recipe for APP bitter green pesto. I use it in pastas and ground turkey etc. But in chicken curry? Yep.

Most people have had some exposure to Indian foods but usually it’s the typical chicken tikka masala that’s loaded in cream and butter and not very nutritious, although very delicious.  Indian food is so diverse. It’s like if you only had southern food(fried chicken, collard greens, mac and cheese) and you thought that is what American food is. There’s so much to American cuisine. Similarly, there are so many great dishes that come out of India but most people don’t have the opportunity to try them.

A traditional northern Indian curry is called Haryali chicken. Hari means green in Hindi. The green comes from mint and coriander which adds so much depth of flavor and aromas to the dish that my mouth is watering, just writing about it. My version of Haryali chicken is just as deep in flavor but packs a nutritious punch. My husband who is always suspicious of “new” types of chicken curry, adores this healthy delicious version(bitter greens are used but this curry is far from bitter). A must try!

 

 

Ingredients:

1/2 cup of APP bitter green pesto

1 large onion

3 garlic cloves/1 long garlic scape

2 inches of ginger( finely chopped/grated)

2 chili peppers( optional)

5 -6 curry leaves

1 tomato( chopped) or Cento double concentrated organic tomato paste (1 tbsp)

EVOO/coconut oil -3  tbsp

salt

coriander powder

turmeric powder

chili powder

garam masala

1 pasture raised whole chicken- cut into small pieces( typical in Indian curries, approx 4 inch pieces)

 

 

Instructions:

  1. In a heavy bottomed pan, saute chopped onions, garlic and ginger in oil.
  2. Add sprinkle of salt to help with browning.
  3. As the mixture begins to soften, add curry leaves and chili peppers stir to saute.
  4. Add 1-2 tsp of salt( to taste). 1/2 tsp of turmeric, 2 tsp of coriander powder, 2 tsp of chili powder.(The chili powder’s heat depends on the type of chili used to make the powder. If you know you can tolerate/enjoy heat,then go ahead. If you know you can’t, then add just a pinch or so for color or just add some paprika which adds color and smoky flavor with less heat).
  5. When the onion mixture is cooked down and spices are roasted well, add tomato(paste). Stir well.
  6. Once that mixture is cooked down, add chicken. Stir and saute and mix well. Close with lid and let cook for the next 10 minutes.
    • I have found whole chicken to have the most flavor. The bones give the curry just what it needs. I find that pasture-raised meat not only tastes better but also cooks faster.
  7. After 15 minutes, lift the lid, stir and add 1/2 cup of the APP pesto.  Add more as you wish. Adding mint leaves and coriander leaves to this pesto add so much flavor. If I have those herbs at home, I use. If not, it tastes great without.
  8. Add 1 tbsp of garam masala. Garam masala  means warm mixture. That’s what it is, roasted whole spices that are then ground up. I make my own but there are many that are great that are store bought. There are many great brands, but this is one I have used before. If you don’t make Indian food as often as I do, then store bought makes more sense, but the flavor of home roasted spices is incomparable. ( will post my recipe for homemade garam masala later.)
  9. Stir and let cook with the pesto and garam masala with lid on on medium heat for another 10 minutes or so.
  10. Enjoy this thick luscious, healthy, green( haryali) chicken curry with rice, quinoa, chapati/nan. YUM!
    •   A great vegan/vegetarian option to this that I have tried is to add this pesto to chickpeas. It packs a punch and contains no meat.