Monday, September 19, 2011

Sesame Cucumber Side Salad

What to serve as accompanyment to the Cold Noodles of my previous post? Ms. Atlas' menu provided a simple yet strikingly unusual (and tasty) cucumber salad.

     Sesame Cucumber Salad
          from Vegetarian Express by Nava Atlas & Lillian Kayte
  • 1 long English seedless cucumber, unpeeled
  • 2 Tbls oil [I used grapeseed oil]
  • 2 1/2 Tbls rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1-2 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 2 Tbls toasted sesame seeds

  1. Slice the cucumber very thinly.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, combine the oil, vinegar, soy sauce & honey. Stir to mix thoroughly, then stir in the ginger. Pour the oil and vinegar mix over the cucumber slices and toss well. Sprinkle the top with sesame seeds. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

Cold Noodles. On Purpose.

Some of my cookbooks may be better bedtime reading than practical kitchen guides, but Nava Atlas' Vegetarian Express seems to contain recipes which I can actually cook. Nice, right? It's been nearly six weeks since my baby was born, and I've made four new recipes;  three were from Atlas' book.  I've already blogged about the dessert but the main and side dishes were also from her book. The main dish was cold and was reminiscent of pad thai.   

     Cold Noodles with Hot Chili-Orange Oil
     from Vegetarian Express by Nava Atlas & Lillian Kayte
  • 10 to12 ounces angel hair pasta
  • 8-ounce package fresh bean sprouts
  • 2 large carrots, coarsely grated
  • 6 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

  • 1 Tbls hot chili oil 
  • or 1 Tbls dark sesame oil plus 1-2 tsp chili powder
  • 2-3 Tbls soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 Tbls sugar
  • 2 Tbls undiluted orange juice concentrate

  • 1/2 cup dry-roasted almonds, chopped [recipe called for peanuts, but my little one is allergic]
  • 1-2 seedless oranges, peeled and sectioned (optional)

  1. Cook the pasta until al dente. Drain & rinse under cold water until cool. Transfer to large bowl.
  2. While the pasta cooks, steam bean sprouts over medium-high heat, covered, until they're just wilted (about 2-3 mins). Drain & rinse under cold water until cool.
  3. Prepare the carrots, scallions, and parsley (reserve half the parsley for garnish); combine them in a large bowl with the cooked and cooled pasta and the steamed sprouts.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the dressing ingredients and pour the dressing over the pasta mixture. Toss well, coating all strands. Garnish with reserve parsley and nuts. Pass around a plate of seedless orange sections to serve alongside, if desired.
It was good, though I found myself wishing it were either slightly spicier or had more of an orange flavor. If I make this again, I'll push it one way or the other.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Pineapple-Yogurt Ambrosia

Can it be called cooking if you don't heat anything? I vote yes, and thus feel little to no shame in boasting (okay, some shame. I can't believe it's been so long...) that I finally cooked something from my cookbooks once again.

A dessert:

     Pineapple-Yogurt Ambrosia
     from Vegetarian Express by Nava Atlas & Lillian Kayte

  • 1 lb can unsweetened pineapple chunks, drained
  • 1 lb container vanilla yogurt
  • 1/4 cup dark raisins
  • 2 seedless oranges, peeled & sectioned

     Combine ingredients in a serving dish & stir well. Chill until needed.

Mmmmm. Very tasty. And super easy (i.e., perfect for a new mother!).