The Bored Vegetarian

Quinoa with Roasted Sweet Potato, Dinosaur Kale, Chickpeas and Green OnionServes 3-4
1 cup Quinoa2 cups Low Sodium Vegetable Stock3 cups Sweet Potato, peeled and cut into small cubes2 cups Dinosaur Kale, stems removed, leaves chopped1 cup Chickpeas (recommend that you use dried and follow cooking directions on the bag)1/8 cup Green Onion, chopped (white/light green only)1 1/2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil1/3 tsp PaprikaSalt & Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spread sweet potatoes on a baking sheet and drizzle with about a tablespoon of olive oil.  Toss to coat.  Season with salt and sprinkle with paprika.  Roast in the oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are soft, tossing halfway through.  In a saucepan, bring 2 cups of vegetable stock to a boil.  Add quinoa and stir. Cover and reduce heat to a simmer.  Simmer for about 15 minutes or until the quinoa is cooked through and the liquid has mostly evaporated.  In a saute pan, saute the kale and chickpeas in remaining olive oil.  Add quinoa and sweet potato and toss everything together.  Season with salt and pepper.  Spoon into a serving bowl and top with green onion.  Serve warm.  View high resolution

Quinoa with Roasted Sweet Potato, Dinosaur Kale, Chickpeas and Green Onion

Serves 3-4

1 cup Quinoa
2 cups Low Sodium Vegetable Stock
3 cups Sweet Potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
2 cups Dinosaur Kale, stems removed, leaves chopped
1 cup Chickpeas (recommend that you use dried and follow cooking directions on the bag)
1/8 cup Green Onion, chopped (white/light green only)
1 1/2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/3 tsp Paprika
Salt & Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spread sweet potatoes on a baking sheet and drizzle with about a tablespoon of olive oil.  Toss to coat.  Season with salt and sprinkle with paprika.  Roast in the oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are soft, tossing halfway through.  In a saucepan, bring 2 cups of vegetable stock to a boil.  Add quinoa and stir. Cover and reduce heat to a simmer.  Simmer for about 15 minutes or until the quinoa is cooked through and the liquid has mostly evaporated.  In a saute pan, saute the kale and chickpeas in remaining olive oil.  Add quinoa and sweet potato and toss everything together.  Season with salt and pepper.  Spoon into a serving bowl and top with green onion.  Serve warm. 

Creamy Sweet Potato & Apple Mash with Mascarpone & Brown Sugar Whiskey SauceIt’s peak sweet potato season… and whiskey is in season all year round. 
1 large Sweet Potato, peeled and cubed1 Apple, peeled and cubed1/4 cup Heavy Cream 4 Tbsp Butter2 Tbsp Brown Sugar3 Tbsp WhiskeySalt & Pepper (to taste)
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.  Add sweet potatoes and boil until soft.  In a pan, melt 2 Tbsp of butter.  Add add apples and saute until slightly soft, but not mushy.  Drain sweet potatoes and put back into pot.  Add sauteed apples and cream and mash until potatoes are smooth.  The apples will retain their shape.  Salt to taste and keep warm as you make the sauce.  In a saute pan, melt remaining butter.  Add brown sugar and whiskey and whisk together over low/medium heat until it reduces a bit.  Serve sweet potatoes hot topped with mascarpone and drizzled with whiskey sauce. View high resolution

Creamy Sweet Potato & Apple Mash with Mascarpone & Brown Sugar Whiskey Sauce

It’s peak sweet potato season… and whiskey is in season all year round. 

1 large Sweet Potato, peeled and cubed
1 Apple, peeled and cubed
1/4 cup Heavy Cream 
4 Tbsp Butter
2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
3 Tbsp Whiskey
Salt & Pepper (to taste)

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.  Add sweet potatoes and boil until soft.  In a pan, melt 2 Tbsp of butter.  Add add apples and saute until slightly soft, but not mushy.  Drain sweet potatoes and put back into pot.  Add sauteed apples and cream and mash until potatoes are smooth.  The apples will retain their shape.  Salt to taste and keep warm as you make the sauce.  In a saute pan, melt remaining butter.  Add brown sugar and whiskey and whisk together over low/medium heat until it reduces a bit.  Serve sweet potatoes hot topped with mascarpone and drizzled with whiskey sauce.

Sweet Potato HashI served this with a sunny side up egg and a simple mash of avocado, tomato & cilantro2 Sweet Potatoes, chopped small1 small Onion, chopped1 Green Pepper, chopped1/2 Jalapeno, minced1 Tbsp Paprika2 Tsp Chipotle Chili Powder1 Tsp Cumin2 Tbsp Extra Olive OilSalt & Pepper to tasteOver low/medium heat, saute chopped onions with a pinch or two of salt for about 4 minutes.  Add potatoes and stir in with onions.  Turn up heat slightly and cover.  Toss potatoes every 2-3 minutes until soft.  Add jalapeno, season with paprika, cumin and chili powder and toss to coat.  Turn up heat a bit to crisp/brown potatoes.  Add chopped green pepper and salt & pepper to taste.  Once pepper is a bit soft, remove from heat and serve.After a 15 hour work day on Friday, I had one of the best weekends in recent memory.. lots of swimming at Rockaway Beach; Balkan music and cold beer; the Renegade Craft Fair, where I picked up some delicious Salted Honey Caramel Creme from BumbleBerry Farm and this stately otter print (by Ryan Berkley) that brings me extreme joy. 
Today I stumbled across this rope message in Soho that someone had left for any passers by. 
Romance isn’t dead y’all.  View high resolution

Sweet Potato Hash

I served this with a sunny side up egg and a simple mash of avocado, tomato & cilantro

2 Sweet Potatoes, chopped small
1 small Onion, chopped
1 Green Pepper, chopped
1/2 Jalapeno, minced
1 Tbsp Paprika
2 Tsp Chipotle Chili Powder
1 Tsp Cumin
2 Tbsp Extra Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste

Over low/medium heat, saute chopped onions with a pinch or two of salt for about 4 minutes.  Add potatoes and stir in with onions.  Turn up heat slightly and cover.  Toss potatoes every 2-3 minutes until soft.  Add jalapeno, season with paprika, cumin and chili powder and toss to coat.  Turn up heat a bit to crisp/brown potatoes.  Add chopped green pepper and salt & pepper to taste.  Once pepper is a bit soft, remove from heat and serve.

After a 15 hour work day on Friday, I had one of the best weekends in recent memory.. lots of swimming at Rockaway Beach; Balkan music and cold beer; the Renegade Craft Fair, where I picked up some delicious Salted Honey Caramel Creme from BumbleBerry Farm and this stately otter print (by Ryan Berkley) that brings me extreme joy.

 

Today I stumbled across this rope message in Soho that someone had left for any passers by. 

Romance isn’t dead y’all. 

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Maple Cinnamon Brown Butter Sauce (adapted from Food Network)
For the Gnocchi:2 pound Sweet Potatoes (I used two large sweet potatoes for this recipe)2/3 cup Ricotta Cheese1 1/2 tsp Salt1 tsp ground Cinnamon1/4 tsp Black Pepper1 1/4 cup Flour (+ 1/3 more for rolling dough) Preheat the oven to 425.  Prick potatoes with a fork and bake on the middle rack for 40 - 50 minutes until tender.  Allow to cool slight and scoop out potatoes from the skins and mash in a bowl.  You’ll need 2 cups, which you should be able to reach with two large potatoes.  In a bowl, mix potatoes with ricotta, salt, pepper and cinnamon until smooth.  Add flour 1/2 cup at a time to the potato mixture, forming a dough.  It will be sticky.  Lightly flour a flat work service and divide dough into six balls.  Roll balls into 1” around rope.  Cut into 1” pieces (I did mine a diagonal).  Continue the process until all gnocchi is cut.  Boil a large pot of salted water and boil gnocchi in small batches until tender (3-4 minutes).  Drain.
Maple Cinnamon Brown Butter1 stick unsalted Butter1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon2 Tbls Maple Syrup (try to avoid table syrup if possible)1 tsp Salt1/2 tsp Pepper 
While gnocchi are boiling, melt butter in a pan over medium heat.  Once the milk solids begin to brown, remove from heat and stir in cinnamon, maple syrup, salt and pepper.  Toss the gnocchi in the butter and serve immediately.  Top with parmesan if desired. View high resolution

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Maple Cinnamon Brown Butter Sauce (adapted from Food Network)

For the Gnocchi:
2 pound Sweet Potatoes (I used two large sweet potatoes for this recipe)
2/3 cup Ricotta Cheese
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Black Pepper
1 1/4 cup Flour (+ 1/3 more for rolling dough)
 
Preheat the oven to 425.  Prick potatoes with a fork and bake on the middle rack for 40 - 50 minutes until tender.  Allow to cool slight and scoop out potatoes from the skins and mash in a bowl.  You’ll need 2 cups, which you should be able to reach with two large potatoes.  In a bowl, mix potatoes with ricotta, salt, pepper and cinnamon until smooth.  Add flour 1/2 cup at a time to the potato mixture, forming a dough.  It will be sticky.  Lightly flour a flat work service and divide dough into six balls.  Roll balls into 1” around rope.  Cut into 1” pieces (I did mine a diagonal).  Continue the process until all gnocchi is cut.  Boil a large pot of salted water and boil gnocchi in small batches until tender (3-4 minutes).  Drain.

Maple Cinnamon Brown Butter
1 stick unsalted Butter
1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
2 Tbls Maple Syrup (try to avoid table syrup if possible)
1 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Pepper 

While gnocchi are boiling, melt butter in a pan over medium heat.  Once the milk solids begin to brown, remove from heat and stir in cinnamon, maple syrup, salt and pepper.  Toss the gnocchi in the butter and serve immediately.  Top with parmesan if desired.

Labor Day Dinner

Holy disorienting weekend.  Saturday night I found myself in a giant warehouse which had been converted into The Forbidden City, which I still don’t fully understand.. but sometimes when your friend invites you to some weird event, you say yes and ask questions later.  Needless to say, I had lots of questions.  Can you decipher what’s going on here?

Besides the warehouse excursion, I did a some painting, clothes swapping, scrabble playing, cocktail drinking (I would like to bathe in the Warsaw Mermaid from Manhattan Inn, thanks) and a bit of cooking to round out the weekend. 

Emma and Maria came by Monday night and we caught up while I nearly chopped my fingers off (false alarm) making my first Lentil Veggie Burger, Sage Sweet Potato Fries and some vanilla ice cream topped with Cactus Pear Sauce.  Yes, it was as good as it sounds.

Lentil Burger with Roasted Zucchini & Onion and Feta Greek Yogurt

Lentil Burger
2 cups brown lentils, cooked al dente
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 egg
1 red pepper, chopped
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp liquid smoke
Salt to taste
Water (if needed for moisture)

In a food processor, combine all ingredients and season to taste.  Form into flat patties.  Cook in a pan with a bit of olive oil, browning each side, or on a grill.



Roasted Zucchini & Onion and Feta Greek Yogurt
1/2 zucchini, chopped
1/2 while onion, chopped
1 cup Green yogurt
1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
salt to taste
2 tbls olive oil

Toss zucchini and onion with olive oil, sprinkle with salt.  Roast in a 350 degree oven until vegetables start to brown. In a bowl, combine roasted veggies, yogurt, feta and salt.

On a toasted bun, spread Greek yogurt mixture, add burger and greens (I used arugula, per usual.)



Sage Sweet Potato Fries
2 large sweet potatoes
1/3 cup fresh sage, chopped
olive oil to coat
salt to taste

Chop sweet potatoes into fries.  Toss with olive oil, salt and most of the sage.  Roast in oven at 350 degrees until fries are soft and starting to brown.


Sage Dipping Sauce
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
chopped sage
salt
1/2 lemon (juice)

Mix ingredients in a bowl and serve with sweet potato fries.

Cactus Pear Sauce
2 Cactus pears
1/2 sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup white wine
1 tsp cornstarch mixed with water

Remove skins of cactus pears and chop fruit.  In a sauce pan, bring pears, sugar and white wine to a boil.  Turn down to a simmer and add vanilla and corn starch, stirring regularly.  Once sauce thickens, use a mesh strainer to strain red sauce and remove seeds/remaining pulp.  Serve over vanilla ice cream.

The meal was quite the hit, especially the lentil burger.  I love it when things that I put together as I shop end up working so well.

My mom is getting into town tomorrow, so it’s going to be a busy week.  We’re going to a Broadway show (how grand!) and I’m thinking about dragging her to see Telekinesis tomorrow because I’m selfish and don’t want to miss their show. There will be a friends meet n greet at some point.  If anyone has suggestions on how to entertain moms in NYC, please let me know. 

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