I’m always on the lookout for healthy ingredients that don’t require refrigeration, or at least have a long shelf life, especially for weeknight dinners. So I was pleasantly surprised to find a $5 bag of dried Maitake mushrooms at the non-frugal Ferry Building and a bag of ready-to-cook red quinoa at a nearby market. Bingo!
First, soak the mushrooms in hot water for 15-30 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the quinoa according to instructions, and prep your ingredients of choice. I sautéed minced garlic with chopped green onions and carrots in olive oil, before stirring the mushrooms in. I added spinach directly to the pot of quinoa, and microwaved frozen peas, before pouring in the sauté mixture. For seasoning, I used a generous sprinkling of salt and a couple shakes of fish sauce.
Basically, use your imagination and enjoy guilt-free!
It’s Sacramento Beer Week, so what better time to celebrate barley? Actually, that wasn’t really the motivation for this. The real story is that we’re going to be drinking a lot of beer to celebrate a certain Beer, so a healthy and hearty brunch is in order.
I’ve been wondering what to do with the pearled barley I was inspired to purchase at some point. So naturally, Pinterest provided a solution, Skillet Barley with Kale & Eggs.
I swapped in green onions for shallots, spinach for kale, and chicken broth for vegetable broth, in this adaptation:
Add 2 sliced green onions to 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium high heat; cook for 2 minutes.
Add 1 cup barley; stir to toast for 1 minute.
Add 3.5 cups broth (I used organic chicken broth) and bring to boil; adjust temperature as needed to maintain active boil for 15 minutes, and ultimately you want the barley to soak up all the liquid.
Turn on the broiler with the rack 6 inches below.
Stir in a bunch of spinach (I used half a bag) until wilted. Add another swirl of olive oil to help the process along.
Crack 4 eggs over the top; season with salt, and broil until egg whites are opaque. Serve with freshly grated Parmesan.
I was very happy with the results, because I like grains any time of day, and the dish had the right amount of flavor. David isn’t as convinced about the barley. But the eggs were perfectly runny at least!
There is a highly addictive bean dip that for years permeated many a holiday party and Super Bowl. Then it took a leave of absence as two primary ingredients posed a bit of a problem: cream cheese and sour cream.
For the big game yesterday, I gave it a goat milk makeover and it was a huge hit. To hear previously restricted party-goers give themselves permission to dig in and enthusiastically go back for seconds, made me so happy. There’s no reason we can’t all enjoy traditionally cream-based party dips!
So without further ado, here’s how to make “Going, Going, Gone Goat Cheese Bean Dip” for your next party:
Blend the following in a bowl or food processor:
1 can Frito Lays Bean Dip (available in the chip aisle)
8 oz goat milk yogurt (replaces sour cream in the original)
8 oz goat cheese (replaces cream cheese in the original)
Half a packet or 3 tbsp taco seasoning
Half a bunch of green onions, chopped
Pour the mixture into a casserole dish. Cover with Mexican blend shredded cheese (I used a cheddar blend, which is naturally lactose free but shredded goat cheese could work too). Sliced olives can also top the cheese, if you prefer.
Bake uncovered at 350 degrees about 15-20 minutes or until bubbly. Serve with chips and watch as it makes a disappearing act.
In the early days of Dinner with David, I spent a fair number of nights boiling chicken to make enough shredded, juicy meat for several dinners. Nutritious and satisfying, it was about as exciting as, well, boiled chicken.
So, with a generous bunch of green onions in the fridge, and inspiration from Pinterest, I took some liberties with two nights of leftovers.
Soba Noodles Cooked in Chicken Broth, with Peas and Green Onions
Simply boil leftover broth along with two cups of water. Add 1 tbsp each of soy sauce and fish sauce, and green onions. Add soba noodles and cook until nearly tender; then add leftover chicken and frozen peas, and stir until peas are cooked through.
Shredded Chicken with Spanish Rice, Topped with Green Onions
This attempt was a little more dicy. Inspired by Pinterest, I decided to give the ol’ rice cooker a try at making Spanish rice. Add one can of diced tomatoes (I used tomato sauce), 1 1/2 cups water, 1 1/2 cups of rice and 2 tbsp of taco seasoning to the rice cooker. Be prepared to force your rice cooker’s handle to stay in the on position like I did (mine wanted to stop a couple of minutes in). But, unlike me, don’t let it cook so long it chars the bottom of the pot. 🙂 Serve with leftover chicken, broth and green onions.
Here’s another healthy take on the traditional hamburger sour cream casserole, this time using yogurt and goat cheese in place of sour cream and cream cheese. I also swapped in ground turkey, like last time. Can you tell my kitchen lighting and iPhone camera pixels have improved?!
“Hamburger” Casserole with Goat Cheese
Brown 1+ pound of ground turkey in skillet with 1 minced garlic clove. Add two cans of tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes, and simmer for 20 minutes or so. Meanwhile, boil a bag’s worth of egg noodles and drain. Next, stir together one bunch worth of sliced green onions with a 5 oz. cube of goat cheese and 1+ cup of yogurt, or enough to create a sauce. Layer all three (meat, noodles, sauce) in a casserole dish, and bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. Stir halfway through baking so the noodles don’t get too try.
Bonus: leftovers for a couple of nights, depending on how hungry you are!