Mushroom Muttar Bhaji [1/27/2012]

Mushroom Muttar Bhaji

1-2 8oz pkg mushrooms
1 15oz can green peas
1 medium onion
1 8oz can tomato sauce
1 tsp ginger
1-2 cloves garlic
1 fresno chili pepper
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 tbs oil or butter
1 tbs chili powder
1 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp garam masala
2 tsp kasoori methi
1/2 tsp salt

Wipe mushrooms with damp cloth and slice thickly. Dice the onion and chili pepper.

Heat the oil or butter in a pan on medium. Saute the onion until it starts to turn golden.

Add the garlic, ginger, chili pepper, and garam masala. Saute for a couple minutes.

Add the tomato sauce, mushrooms and remaining spices. Lower the heat a tiny bit and simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir in the peas and heavy cream. Continue cooking for a couple more minutes.

Festo is so cool: A robot that flies like a bird [11/12/2011]

Quinoa Tabouli [3/28/2011]

Quinoa Tabouli

1 cup quinoa + 2 cups water
2 bunches of flat leaf parsley chopped
4-10 sprigs mint finely chopped
1 bunch green onions chopped
Optional:
1/2 cucumber peeled and chopped
1/4 cup pepitas
1 15oz can garbonzo beans
Dressing:
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 tbs vinegar
2/3 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 lg garlic clove minced
1 tsp salt
2 tsp paprika

Add water and quinoa to a saucepan, cover, and bring to a boil.
Turn the heat down to medium and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
Fluff the quinoa with a fork and turn it out into a bowl to cool.

Mix the dressing ingredients together.

Assemble quinoa, parsley, mint, green onions, any optional additions, and toss in the dressing. If you don't use the garbonzo beans and cucumber, there will be more dressing than necessary.

Squashatouille [3/26/2011]

Squashatouille

5 to 10 summer squash sliced and halved
1 to 2 onion
2 to 4 garlic cloves
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 tbs tomato paste
1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock
2 to 3 tbs olive oil
use one or more of the following herbs:
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp oregano
2 tsp parsley
2 tsp basil
optional topping:
1/4 cup dry aged shredded cheese

Heat a pan with olive oil on medium heat. Add the diced onions and saute for a couple of minutes.
Next add the minced garlic, and saute until aromatic.
Add in the tomato paste, and cook for several minutes while stirring.
Pour in the stock, and deglaze the pan bottom.
Add the squash, cover, and cook until soft, stirring every few minutes or so.
Add the herbs, salt, and pepper and stir uncovered for another 2 minutes
to cook off liquid.
Top with cheese.

Women's History Month Profile: Sally Ride [3/23/2011]

I have always been interested in astronomy. As a very young child one of my favorite books took you on a journey through the solar system. In art classes, I often found ways to work an alien into the scene. I covered my ceiling with glow-in-the-dark stars, and hung them at various heights to create a 3-d effect. I became an avid science-fiction fan and later founded an astronomy club at my high school. My senior year I wrote a paper on dark matter, using the internet for the first time to understand the current research. While I didn't end up studying Astronomy as planned, I still enjoy attending lectures on dark energy, string theory, and the anthropic principle. I still have a VHS tape from junior high of a PBS series on the universe.

For as long as I remember, I have also been inspired by women of great accomplishment. I am often overwhelmed by the determination, bravery, compassion, selflessness, intellect, and creativity that so many great women possess. It is important to me that all women are free to put these talents to use and better our world. There have always been strong, influential women. However, since the women's rights movement, I am aware of more and more inspiring women doing all sorts of incredible works. I feel privileged to live at a time where women in every country are standing up for their rights and freedoms.

When reflecting on women's history month, many different names flooded my mind, but only one of which I have been lucky enough to meet. As a 5 1/2 year old girl looking up at the stars, I was very impressed by NASA Astronaut Sally Ride who made news that year by becoming the first American woman in space. She visited the Lexington Arts and Science center and signed my drawing of an alien. Sally Ride makes it an important part of her job to encourage young children (especially girls) to consider careers in science and to dream big. With the many scientific problems facing us today and in the near future, we need students to be inspired to tackle those problems. Education and research funding should be increased not cut, and our teachers who are doing their best should be rewarded and honored not attacked. Like our President Barack Obama, Sally Ride believes in women and what they can achieve, she stands on their side when others would hope to hold us back. She continues to be an inspiration to me and others.

Baingan Bhartha [3/19/2011]

Baingan Bhartha

2-3 Eggplants (or equivalent in baby thai eggplants)
1 onion
1 tomato
5 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp hot pepper flakes
1/2 tsp very hot chili powder
2 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garam marsala
3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Soak diced eggplant in very salty water for 10 minutes. Rinse so that some of the salt comes off.

Heat 1 tbsp of EVOO, add cumin and sizzle, then add chopped onion and minced garlic and brown.

Add diced tomato, pepper flakes, chili powder, turmeric, coriander, ginger, and salt.

Separately, blacken the eggplant in batches with butter and remaining EVOO.

Then cook together until all the ingredients are soft (~10 minutes).

Stir in the garam marsala right before serving.

Thai Green Curry Chicken [3/18/2011]

Thai Green Curry Chicken

1.5 lbs chicken thighs
3 tablespoons green curry paste
13 to 18 oz coconut milk
10 oz (2 cans) bamboo shoots
5 to 10 Kaffir lime leaves
3 stalks lemongrass quartered & bruised
2.5 tablespoons fish sauce
1 to 2 red bell pepper sliced
1/2 lg onion sliced
1 to 3 cloves garlic minced
1 oz to 3 oz fresh basil
2 tablespoons oil
1.5 crowns of broccoli (in pieces)


Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces.

Heat the oil and curry paste in the pan.

Add the chicken, lime leaves, garlic, and lemongrass. Fry for 2 minutes.

Add about 6 oz of coconut milk, onion, broccoli.
Simmer until chicken is fully cooked.

Add the bell pepper, and bamboo shoots. Add another 5 oz of coconut milk.
Continue simmering until bell pepper and bamboo shoots soften to your preference.

Pick out the lemongrass and lime leaves.
Add the remaining 2 to 6 oz coconut milk, basil, and fish sauce.

Serve over rice or raw baby spinach greens.

Pepperese Salad [3/16/2011]

Pepperese Salad

1 bell pepper
1 pkg basil
1 pkg fresh mozzarella pearls
1/4 cup olive oil
kosher salt to taste
cracked fresh black pepper to taste
optional:
1/2 to 1 cucumber
1/2 bunch radishes
1 tbs onion diced
1 to 3 green onions

Chop the bell pepper, basil, and (cucumber, radish, or green onions if using)
into pearl sized pieces.

Mix in a large bowl with the mozzarella, olive oil, salt and pepper.

Toss together and serve.

Bhindi Masala [3/15/2011]

Bhindi Masala

1.33 lbs of okra sliced
2 tbs oil
1 lg onion diced
1.5 cups canned diced fire-roasted tomatoes (including juice in the can)
3 cloves garlic minced
1 tsp amchoor
1 tsp salt
1 tbs ginger paste

Spice Mix:
1 tsp cumin seed
1/2 tsp nigella/kalongi
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp chili powder
2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/4 tsp hot powdered dried chili
1/4 tsp hot pepper flake

Heat the oil. Add the onion and spice mix. Cook on medium until the onion is softened, about 10 minutes.

Add the salt, garlic, tomatoes, and okra. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes.

Lower the heat slightly, and cover the pan. Allow the steam to cook
the okra fully through. It should be about 30 minutes.
Stir it frequently to make sure it isn't sticking to the bottom.
If it seems too dry at any point during the 30 minutes, add a little water.

Add the amchoor and ginger paste.

Adapted from Honey What's Cooking recipe for Punjabi Bhindi Masala

Madrashi Curry [3/04/2011]

Madrashi Curry
approx. 2 hours total prep & cooking time

1.5 lbs meat
1/3 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon heavy cream
2 tablespoons oil
1 onion chopped finely
2/3 of a can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes (including 2/3 of the water in the can)
2 teaspoon ginger paste
4 cloves garlic diced
1 teaspoon salt

Mix together:
2 teaspoon cayenne powder
2 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoon coriander powder
2 peppercorns (ground in pestle)
1 bay leaf
2.5 inch cinnamon stick
4 cloves (ground in pestle)
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds (ground in pestle)
1/2 teaspoon poppy seeds (ground in pestle)
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds

Sear meat in the oil (8 to 9 minutes on medium heat).
Don't fully cook it through, just enough to cut it more easily. Transfer to cutting board.

While the meat is cooling, brown the onion.

Add the all spices (except the ginger, garlic, and salt) and reduce the heat to low.
Saute for 15 minutes.

Cut the meat into desired size pieces.

Add the meat and tomatoes and increase the heat to medium. Saute for 5 to 10 minutes.

Add 2 cups of water (a little bit at a time) and continue simmering on medium heat for 30 minutes.

Add the salt, ginger, garlic, and coconut milk.
Reduce the heat to low and simmer for another 20 to 30 minutes.

Allow it to continue to sit at very low heat until some of the liquid reduces for a thicker sauce.
Stir in the sour cream and heavy cream.

Serve over rice or mashed cauliflower.