Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Making A List

After a weekend of many social engagements and a good chunk of time spent on housework, I managed to carve in some time at the very end for recipe planning, list making, grocery run, and cooking session.    I could have used a couple more hours tacked onto my weekend, as usual, so I did some additional cooking on Monday evening after work.

Shopping List:
12 ripe tomatoes (@ 5lbs)  plus more for week
Fresh Dill
3 red bell peppers
2 red beets
sprouts (which I opted out of while at the store)
avocado (no reason, just because they're yum)
bunch of spinach x2
5 cups chicken broth
whole wheat pitas
turkey from deli
french bread
chocolate (only the good kind)

And if you must know, I did stick to this list precisely, except for I ventured off into the ice cream aisle and got a mini tub of Raspberry/vanilla Frozen Yogurt and a Chocolate one... I was feeling craaa-aazy~

Reasons for items on this list:   Pita Sandwiches with spinach-chickpea spread, sweet red pepper and beet soup, chilled tomato-dill soup, salmon salad and curried egg on multi grain bread (perfect for a can of salmon that hadn't really had a purpose until now).

All of these recipes were courtesy of "Power Foods-150 delicious recipes with the 38 healthiest ingredients"  From the editors of whole living magazine, Foreword by Martha Stewart.

I was most impressed with the chilled tomato-dill soup.  I have made gazpacho before and it had come out bland, this recipe tastes great and wow is it healthy.   Soup is listed as 100 calories per serving.... and the only thing it is missing is ingredients that are unrecognizably long and horrible.

Pita Sandwiches with Spinach-Chickpea Spread

Now this caught my eye for a couple of reasons, first was I had Garbanzo Beans in my pantry as well as Tahini, both which needed an excuse to hit the plate.   Both purchased for homemade hummus, but I never actually made it.

 I will say that this little gizmo is probably one of the best items that I got sucked into at a pampered chef party.  Anything that comes out of a can, hits this gizmo.  

 Standard rinse for canned beans is 3 times under my watch.

 And next we have the salad spinner, which gets tons of use in this kitchen.   Fresh Spinach needs a complete bath or three.  No, I did not buy the pre-washed, pre-cut or pre-bagged.   This was left alone as a thriving whole food and you or I can take it from there.  You'll notice I was pulling off the stems as I was bathing it.

 Garlic. Enough Said.

 Salt and Red Pepper Flakes.  I had a few things going on while cooking this, so I pre-measured this so that it was ready and easily poured when I needed it.

Lemon, back to the a few things going on (house guests) while cooking this... I opted out of the fresh lemon, but this bottle is cute in it's own right.

Ok, so a few things happened here without documentation.   Olive oil and garlic 1 minute.   Add Chickpeas and lemon juice for about 1 more minute.    Then add the Spinach, salt and red pepper flakes.   It says to cover and raise heat to medium-high until spinach has wilted or about 4 minutes and to stir once.   Awful tempting to lift up that lid more often then once.  Especially when you need photos.

Not sure what this is all about; may have been a mad dash to get the photo with the lid off/on real fast, may have been something splattered on the lens, may have been distraction, may have been all of the above.  All in all, I think it could be a frameable piece.      (That, and I am low on pics, so I'll keep it in)

Once it is cooked, transfer to bowl, blend.   Add Tahini   (honestly the tahini is optional... I actually forgot about it until after we ate that night and then I added it in afterwards, no major change. 

Quick Pic of the Pita... we were hungry so it is a no fuss shot.    We also had soup that night.

Pita Sandwiches with spinach-chickpea spread    Serves 4

2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
10 ounces fresh spinach, trimmed, washed well, and drained
Coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons tahini (sesame seed paste)
2 whole wheat pitas, halved
1 tomato thinly sliced

Heat oild in a large saucepan over medium. Cook garlic, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minutes.  Add chickpeas and 1 tablespoon lemon juice.  Cook, stirring, 1 minutes.   Add spinach, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and the red pepper flakes.  Cover; raise heat to medium-high.  Cook, stirring once, until spinach has wilted, about 4 minutes.  Uncover; raise heat to high.  Cook, stirring, until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 2 minutes.  Let cool.

Pulse chickpea mixture with tahini, remaining 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a food processor until slightly chunky. 

To serve, fill each pita half with 1/4 cup spread, and layer with tomato slices.

Now this will make you eat well and play well~

Chilled Tomato-dill soup and sweet red pepper and beet soup... coming soon.

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