Category Archives: Fall

Curried Cauliflower & Potato Soup

Roasting the cauliflower first adds depth. Some tomato and coconut milk give the broth a rich, silky texture.
Makes about 3 quarts
Shopping List

2 tsp coriander

2 tsp cumin

11/2 tsp cinnamon

11/4 tsp turmeric

pinch cayenne pepper

1 small head cauliflower

2 TBL olive oil

1 large onion

1-2 carrots (for 1 cup diced)

3 large cloves garlic

11/2 tsp grated fresh ginger

1 tsp red chile pepper flakes

1 (14-16 ounce) can whole tomatoes, or no-salt tomato sauce

4 cups vegetable broth

2-4 russet potatoes (3 cups diced)

2-4 sweet potatoes (3 cups diced)

1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk

1 large lime

1 bunch cilantro

Preheat oven to 450ºF.

In a small bowl, combine

  • 2 tsp coriander
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 11/2 cinnamon
  • 11/4 tsp turmeric
  • 11/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp pepper
  • pinch cayenne pepper

In a large bowl, toss

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets (about 6 cups)
  • 1 TBL olive oil

Sprinkle with 1 TBL of the spice mixture and toss again. Spread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast the cauliflower until the edges are browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large pot heat the remaining

  • 1 TBL olive oil

over medium-high heat. Add

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 cup diced carrot

and cook, stirring often, until starting to brown, 3-4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cook a few minutes more, stirring often, until the onion is soft. Add

  • 3 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 11/2 tsp grated (or minced) fresh ginger
  • 1 tsp red chile pepper flakes
  • the remaining spice mixture

Cook, stirring, for 1 minute more.

Stir in

  • 1 (14-16 ounce) can whole tomatoes, or no-salt tomato sauce

scraping up any browned bits and breaking up the tomatoes, and simmer for 1 minute. Add

  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups diced peeled russet potatoes (1/2-inch)
  • 3 cups diced peeled sweet potatoes (1/2-inch)
  • 2 tsp lime zest
  • 2 TBL lime juice

Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook, partially cover and stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 35 to 40 minutes.

Stir in

  • 1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk
  • the reserved roasted cauliflower

Return to a simmer to heat through. Serve garnished with cilantro.

Autumn Soup

Indian flavors and fall vegetables make a great combination
6 to 8 servings
Shopping List

olive oil

large bunch leeks

small pumpkin or butternut squash

2 turnips

1/2 pound potatoes

red pepper flakes

ground cumin

garam masala

fenugreek leaves (dried or fresh)

Saute

  • 4 cups (12 ounces) chopped leeks (white part), cleaned of any sand

in

  • a glug of olive oil

When tender, add

  • 4 cups (18 ounces)  peeled pumpkin (or butternut squash), cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 11/2 cups (8 ounces) turnip, peeled and cut into dize
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) potato, peeled and cut into dice

Add water to cover (4 cups) plus

  • 1 tsp salt
  • red pepper flakes to taste
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 TBL dried fenugreek leaves (or more, if fresh)

Bring to a simmer and cover to cook for 45 minutes. Check to see if vegetables are tender. Puree when done. Adjust seasonings, adding lemon juice if desired.

 

Chicken Pot Pie with Cornmeal Crust

Much better than those frozen pot pies of your childhood
Shopping List

1 pound cooked chicken meat or 4 chicken thighs

2 medium (or 1 large) turnips

1 parsnip

8 ounces mushrooms

3 medium or 2 large carrots

2 large onion

1 pound potatoes

3-4 TBL olive oil

5 ounces frozen peas

1 cup milk

13/4 cups flour

3/4 teaspoon chicken base (or 1 cube chicken bouillon)

1/4 cup cornmeal (we prefer the granularity of Quaker brand corn meal)

1/2 cup shortening

1 egg

If you have some cooked meat and broth available, skip this step and continue with the mushrooms, below.

Place in saute pan

  • 1 onion, thickly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp salt

placing

  • 4 chicken thighs on top of onion slices

add

  • 3 cups water

Bring to a boil, reducing heat to maintain a low, gentle simmer and cook ATTNcovered for 30 minutes. Remove chicken, reserving liquid, and let cool. Discard onion pieces. Strain liquid and measure: add water to bring amount to 3 cups. Discard chicken skin and bone the chicken meat, cutting into bite-size chunks.

Continue from this point if you already have cooked meat and broth available. Slice and saute on high heat:

  • 2 TBL oil
  • 8 ounces white mushrooms

cooking until well colored. Set aside. In the meantime, dice

  • 2 medium (or 1 large) turnips
  • 1 parsnip
  • 3 medium-sized or 2 large carrots
  • 1 large onion

In a large (12-inch) skillet, heat

  • 1-2 TBL olive oil

and saute vegetables for 10 minutes. Then add

  • 1 pound potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Continue cooking for 10 minutes stirring often. Stop cooking while vegetables are still a bit crisp, especially the potatoes. Add

  • chicken meat (1 pound or whatever you obtained from cooking the chicken thighs)
  • 5 ounces frozen peas

Spoon into a baking dish or gratin pan. Generally this is about the size of a 13- x 9-inch baking pan or a decorative dish. The pan should hold all the mixture with a bit of room to spare; broader is better because you get more crust surface.

In a small bowl, combine until smooth

  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup milk

Preheat oven to 425º F. In a large saucepan, heat

  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 3/4 tsp chicken base or 1 chicken bouillon cube
  • 1/4 tsp ground pepper
  • 3/4 tsp salt

to a boil. Then add the milk mixture. Stir until it thickens. Stir sauce and pour over chicken/vegetable mixture in the baking dish

In a mixing bowl, combine

  • scant 1/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup flour
  • 3/4 tsp salt

Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut in

  • 1/2 cup shortening

When mixture resembles coarse crumbs, sprinkle with

  • 1/3 cup ice water

ATTN1 TBL at a time, mixing with a fork in each area where you sprinkle. Add only enough water for the dough to bind together. Roll it out on a floured surface into a shape about 2 inches bigger than the top of the baking dish. Position over filling, folding the 1-inch overhang into a flute. Brush crust with

  • Milk or 1 beaten egg

ATTNCut slits in top of crust. Place on a cookie sheet to catch any drips and transfer to the oven. Bake for 35-40 minutes until crust is golden brown and filling is hot and bubbling. You may need to cover the edge of the crust with foil to prevent over-browning. Let sit 5 minutes before serving.

Maafe

Mah-fay is a stewed dish found in many countries of Africa with variation, but always having of ground peanuts in its sauce.
About 6 servings, depending on your appetites

Remove the skin from

  • 10-12 chicken thighs

You may wish to brown them in some

  • vegetable oil to coat bottom of 3 quart pot

If you do brown them, reserve the chicken after browning. If not, and I am inclined not to bother, put the oil in the pot and continue by cooking

  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 tsp salt

until it is softened. While it cooks, prepare

  • 3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 1/2 peeled butternut squash, cut into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 3-4 jalapeno peppers, stems removed and discarded. Cut peppers half, then slice crosswise. I leave the seeds in because I like more spice in the dish. You can omit the seeds or reduce the peppers according to taste.

When the onions are soft, add the vegetables, chicken and

  • the complete contents of 1 can (32 ounces) of plum tomatoes
  • 3/4 to 1 cup of peanut butter (I used smooth this time)
  • a few shakes of garlic powder or some minced garlic
  • 1 TBL grated ginger
  • 1 cup water

Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low and cover the pot. Make sure the heat is just hot enough to keep it at a simmer. Move chicken around in pot after 20 minutes and again 20 minutes later.

You can serve the dish as soon as the chicken is cooked through (about 40-45 minutes total) but ATTN it will taste much better if you reheat it and serve it the following day.

Note: this dish can be made with goat, beef or probably even firm tofu instead of the chicken. You may wish to vary the vegetables to include potatoes or other root vegetables.

Italian Clam Soup

So delicious and clammy!
Makes four servings
Shopping List

3 dozen littleneck clams

1/4 cup olive oil

3-4 cloves garlic

canned anchovies

1 cup dry white wine

28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes

2 tsp dried oregano

dried basil

fresh parsley

Red pepper flakes

bread, for croutons

Scrub

  • 3 dozen littleneck clams

At some point, make the croutons, at bottom of this recipe. Heat in 2-3 quart soup pot

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Add, keeping heat low enough it does not brown:

  • 2 TBL finely minced garlic

Cook briefly and  add

  • 6 anchovy fillets

Cook until the anchovies break down into a paste.  Add

  • 1 cup white wine

and simmer for a minute. Open

  • 28-ounce can of San Marzano or other plum tomatoes

Chop up tomatoes a bit (you can remove the seeds if you care  to), discard a gross-looking piece of basil that seems to be hidden in every can and add all the tomatoes and liquid to the pot, along with

2 tsp dried oregano

11/2 tsp dried basil

1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley

1/2 to 1 tsp hot red pepper flakes

freshly ground pepper, to taste

 

ATTN Do not add salt: the anchovies have enough. Bring the pot to a boil and stir briefly. You may work up until this point and pause the recipe until 5 minutes before you with to eat. If you do so, turn off the heat.

Resume the recipe by bringing the soup to a boil. Add the cleaned clams and cover the pot for 5 minutes (or until all the clams open). Serve the soup, leaving the clams in the shells. Garnish with Garlic Croutons (see next paragraph).

To make the croutons, toast 8 slices of a baguette. When toasted, rub one side with the cut surface of a garlic clove you have cut in half.

Adapted from  More 60-Minute Gourmet by Pierre Franey.

 

Eggplant Soup

Cool, delicious and creamy.
Makes 6 cups
Shopping List

2 pounds eggplant

1/4 cup olive oil

2 large onions

6 garlic cloves

Cayenne

3 cups vegetable or chicken stock

1-2 lemons

liquid smoke (optional)

herbs to garnish (za’atar or parsley)

Prick holes in

  • 2 medium eggplants

Roast on grill very dark. If using an oven, blacken under broiler (4 minutes per side), turning as needed. When the eggplants are cool, remove flesh and discard skins. Chop flesh a bit and reserve.

In large saucepan, saute

  • 3 TBL olive oil
  • 2 cups sliced onions
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cook 7 minutes, until onions are soft. Add

  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • Cayenne to taste (non, a pinch or more!)

Add the reserved eggplant and cook for a minute. Then add

  • 3 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 3 cups water

Bring to simmer for 10 minutes, check seasoning and adjust salt, pepper and cayenne.

Puree soup in batches in blender. ATTN Hot liquids expand a lot in the blender and can be almost explosive, so either leave the lid ajar or work in very small batches. Alternatively wait for the soup to cool before using the blender.

ATTNGrate a small bit of lemon rind and reserve it for the garnish.

Strain soup through a fine strainer to remove seeds, if any remain after the blender. Add

  • 3 to 4 TBL lemon juice, to taste

If you want a smoky flavor, consider adding

  • 1/2 tsp liquid smoke

Mix the lemon zest with 1 TBL olive oil for a garnish. For each bowl of soup, top with a tsp of the lemon-flavored oil and some zaatar or chopped parsley.

ATTN I liked this so much served cold, but I guess you could serve it hot.

Adapted from The New York Times, August 14, 2013

 

Gedempte Chicken with Preserved Lemons

Makes 4 to 6 servings
Shopping List

2 tablespoons oil

3 cloves garlic

1 large or 2 medium onions

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Several shakes cayenne pepper

1 whole chicken, cut into 8 to 10 pieces and trimmed of fat

1 or 2 cans (16-ounce) chickpeas

1 preserved lemon

In a 2-quart stew pot, heat on a medium heat

  • 2 tablespoons oil

When the oil is warmed up, add

  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 large or 2 medium onions, chopped

Stir occasionally. After 5 minutes add

  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • Several shakes cayenne pepper

Let this cook for about 10 minutes until the onions become translucent and are browned at the edges. (We used to joke that it didn’t taste right unless you burnt the onions. We’re wiser: it’s no joke.) Be sure the onions are well browned in order to develop a good flavor. Cut up

  • 1 whole chicken, to make 8 to 10 pieces, trimmed of fat

Remove the chicken skin if you will be eating the food right after cooking and you are in a rush, otherwise you won’t have time to cool the liquid to separate out the fat. Push the onions aside and place the meat at the bottom of the pan, with the onions on top, thus allowing the meat to brown. As the chicken browns, turn the pieces over, and eventually get the rest of the chicken into the pan. When it is all browned, add

  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 or 2 cans (16-ounce) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • Peel of one preserved lemon, cut into small pieces

Cover the pot, reducing heat to the lowest flame to keep it at a low simmer.Occasionally move the pieces around as they cook. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes, until the meat is cooked through. (If you want a more saucy result, add some chicken stock, but resist the urge to add more water.) If you did not skin the chicken, then you must remove the liquid from the pot and separate out the fat. Serve over couscous.

Pasta with Squid Ink Sauce

Inky black and tasting very fishy this isn’t for everyone, but we love it!
Serves 3, perhaps 4.

Boil some water to cook the pasta. A big pot full of salted water is best. Wait until the water is almost at a boil before starting because it will take a lot longer than preparing the sauce.

In a large frying pan, saute over medium heat

  • 1 clove garlic, very finely minced
  • 1/2 large onion or 1 medium onion, minced
  • 2 TBL olive oil

Cook until the onion is translucent and tender, but don’t let it brown. Add

  • 1 cup tomato puree
  • 1 generous teaspoon squid ink
  • 3 TBL chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

Let bubble gently for a few minutes. Meanwhile clean

  • 1 pound squid

Cut squid into rings. Start cooking

  • 1/2 pound perciatelli (bucatini)

When the pasta is about ATTNa minute or two from being fully cooked, add the squid to the sauce and stir it from time to time. The squid will get tough if it overcooks, so don’t start this prematurely.

Drain the pasta and add it to the frying pan. ATTNWhile wearing an apron or black clothes, stir until the sauce has thoroughly coated the pasta and the squid is cooked. The total cooking time for the squid is under 3 minutes or you will chewing an awful lot of rubber bands.

Taste and adjust the seasoning by adding a sprinkle of cayenne if it’s not as spicy as you’d like. Serve immediately. Even though there is only 1/2 pound of pasta, this will serve 3 or 4 people because there’s so much squid.

Adapted from FXCuisine.com.

 

Seppie In Zimino

Served with salad and bread, this makes a rustic dinner.
Makes 4 servings as a main course, 6 to 8 as a first course

Shopping List

11/2 to 2 pounds fresh or thawed cuttlefish

1/4 cup olive oil

1 small onion

2 tablespoons minced parsley

A few leaves of minced basil

11/2 to 2 pounds fresh Swiss chard, beet greens, or spinach (or 20 ounces frozen spinach)

1 cup canned plum tomatoes

red pepper flakes


Clean and cut into bite-size pieces or strips (not rings)

  • 11/2 to 2 pounds fresh or thawed cuttlefish

Even if you have purchased cleaned cuttlefish, check that it is completely cleaned. In a pot (large enough to hold all the ingredients) on medium heat, place

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 small onion, minced

Cook until the onion is translucent. Add

  • 2 tablespoons minced parsley
  • A few leaves of minced basil

Saute for another minute. Wash well to remove sand from

  • 11/2 to 2 pounds fresh Swiss chard, beet greens, or spinach

Cut across the stems of the the greens to make large strips, but only use the parts where there are greens. The strips are maybe 1/3-inch wide. Discard the stem-only parts of the greens and avoid including any really tough stems. ATTN If you’re not feeling motivated to use fresh greens you can substitute 20 ounces of thawed, frozen whole-leaf spinach that’s been coarsely chopped.

If using fresh greens, cook on high heat until it cooks down, stirring every minute or so. If using frozen spinach, cook until it is heated through. Add the cuttlefish and

  • 1 cup canned plum tomatoes (or more to taste)
  • 1/2 to 2 tsp red pepper flakes, according to your taste for spicy food
  • salt and pepper to taste

Break up the tomatoes with a spoon. ATTN Go lightly with the salt as the flavors will concentrate as this cooks down. Adjust heat so the pot stays at a simmer. Keep the pot covered and stir every now and then, till the fish is cooked and the sauce is thick. You may need to add some hot water to keep the mixture from drying out or remove the cover towards the end if it’s too watery. This will take about 40 minutes to cook.

Check the seasoning and cook 5 minutes more. ATTN Serve with slices of crusty bread.

Dried Apple Cake

Makes one 9- by 5-inch loaf

3 eggs

1/2 cup unsalted butter

3 cups dried apples

21/2 cups sugar

1 cup raisins

1 cup currants

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon cloves

Allow

3 eggs

1/2 cup unsalted butter

to come to room temperature. Meanwhile soak together

3 cups dried apples

5 cups warm water

When the fruit has been rehydrated, about 30 minutes, drain fruit, reserving liquid. Chop apples and add

21/2 cups sugar

1 cup raisins

1 cup currants

(Chopped figs, prunes, dates or dried cranberries can replace some or all of the raisins and currants.) Cook with very little water (you can use the reserved apple-rehydration water if any remains) until the apples are soft. Let cool. Preheat oven to 350°.

In another bowl, combine

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon cloves

Beat eggs well. Add eggs and softened butter to the fruit mixture. Stir in the flour mixture and mix well. Bake in a greased and floured 9- by 5-inch loaf pan for one hour in a 350° oven.

Cabbage and Ginger Slaw

This is an incredibly refreshing salad.

Makes 8 to 12 servings, depending on your guests

6 cups finely shredded Napa cabbage

1 large red bell pepper, cleaned and finely sliced

2 cups shredded carrots

1/2 cup finely slivered pickled ginger

1/2 cup seasoned rice vinegar

Mix all the ingredients together. If making ahead, chill up to six hours, but it is definitely better the fresher it is. We prefer to mix it all together just before our guests arrive.

Adapted from Sunset Recipe Annual, 1996 Edition

Pasta with Caramelized Onions and Cabbage

A few basic ingredients make a delicious dish
Serves 4 as a main dish

Shopping List

1/4 cup olive oil

2 large onions

4 large cloves garlic

6 cups thinly sliced cabbage

2 tablespoons dried oregano

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 pound pasta

Freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese

Heat in a large heavy skillet

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

over medium-low heat. Add

  • 2 large onions, cut into 1/4-inch slices, broken into rings
  • Salt and pepper

Saute until soft and caramelized, about 30 minutes. Do not try to rush this step. Add

  • 4 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 cups thinly sliced cabbage
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Stir well, add just enough water to cover the bottom of the pan. Cover and cook over medium heat until very tender, about 45 minutes, stirring often and adding a little more water if it dries out. Meanwhile, cook

  • 1 pound pasta

in boiling salted water. Add drained pasta to pan when the cabbage is done, toss well to combine for about 5 minutes. Serve hot, with

  • freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Adapted from teriskitchen.com

Apple-Ginger Mini-Cakes

This started off from a recipe in the King Arthur cookbook, but I don’t like cooked raisins and it collapsed at the center even though it was definitely done cooking at the edge. I did some thinking and adjusted it a bit.

Preheat oven to 325 F. In the bowl of an electric mixer combine

  • 11/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar (I used about 1/4 cup of brown and the rest was white)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp allspice

Combine and then add

  • 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and chopped into 1/4-inch dice (about 21/4 cups once chopped)
  • 1/2 cup candied ginger, cut into raisin-size pieces or smaller (see note)
  • 2 TBL soft butter
  • 2 eggs

Mix until dough forms. Add

  • A hand-full of pecan halves

Stir to mix in the nuts and spoon into greased cake molds. The ones I used are silicone and a little bigger than a cup-cake tins, but with straight sides. I filled them almost up to the top, pushing down with a spoon to eliminate any air pockets. I also tried a ramekin, and it worked, but the cake didn’t rise evenly because it came above the sides a bit sooner. This made 7 mini-cakes. The ones in the silicon baked about 35 minutes; the one in the ceramic ramekin was overbaked after 35 minutes. I think 30 minutes would have been right for the silicon, 25 minutes for the ramekin.

NOTE: I really prefer using the “uncrystallized ginger” from Trader Joe’s because it isn’t coated with sugar.

Turkey Soup

I love gathering up turkey carcasses that family and friends want to throw out at Thanksgiving dinner. Sometimes they are loaded with meat, but even if well trimmed, they yield a delicious soup.

Soak overnight in separate bowls 1 cup barley and 2 cups dried lima beans. I soak them separately.

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Place the carcass(es) on one or more oven-safe trays, along with 2 onions., a few carrots and celery stalks. Be sure the trays have sides as there tends to be some juice attached to the carcasses that will liquefy as it heats. From time to time, turn the bones and vegetables as they brown.

Transfer the bones and vegetables to a stock pot, breaking the rib cage if it doesn’t fit in your stock pot. Add just enough water to cover the bones and vegetables. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Add salt and bay leaves. Let cook for at least an hour. When the stock tastes good, remove the bones and vegetables to a colander. Pour the stock through a fine strainer. Pick the meat from the bones and reserve. You can force the carrots through the sieve to impart their flavor to the stock. Discard the vegetables and bones.

Add the barley and beans to the stock, and bring to a boil. Cook until the beans and barley are nearly done. Add a mixture of diced carrots and parsnip. Cook for 15 minutes and add the reserved meat. Adjust seasoning and serve with egg noodles, dumplings or anything else you like.

Multi-Grain Stuffing

My mother would often make this, not fully cooking the grain, and use it to stuff the Thanksgiving turkey. The excess would sit around the turkey in the roasting pan. At other times, she’d cook it as I do, in a skillet cooking to completion, and serve it as a side dish.

The day before you plan to make the stuffing, pick over

  • 1/2 cup barley

and soak it overnight in water.

Start heating some 2 quarts of water, almost to a boil. You will use this to cook the grain. Meanwhile, finely mince

  • 1 very large onion or 3 of the medium-sized onions often sold in bulk
Also finely mince, keeping separate from the onion
  • 1/2 pound peeled carrots
  • 3 ribs of celery

In an electric frying pan or large skillet, heat

  • 2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Add the onions and cook until soft. After 5 minutes add the carrots and celery.

Meanwhile, in a smaller skillet over medium heat, add

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup uncooked orzo

Stir from time to time and continue to cook until most of the orzo have reached the color of chestnuts, a very dark brown. Don’t worry, it won’t taste burnt, and don’t wimp out and just have them lightly browned.

This batch has a way to go… it needs to be much darker.

When the vegetables have softened, add the drained barley, the cooked orzo and

  • 2 cups of mixed grains (See the note at the end of the recipe.)

Use caution with the next step as ATTN the water will splatter as you begin to add it to the pan. Add:

  • 1 TBL mushroom soup base or some dried bouillon
  • 11/2 tsp salt
  • 6+ cups of hot water.

Reduce to a simmer and cover. Every 5-10 minutes check on the water level and the consistency of the grains. If it’s dry and the grains aren’t fully cooked, add water. When it’s done and the grains are easily chewed check the seasoning. Serve right away or let cool and reheat later. This makes about 10-12 cups depending on the grains you use. For a very large crowd at Thanksgiving I generally double this recipe.

NOTE: Typically I’ve used 2/3 brown rice, 1/3 cup bulgur wheat, 1/3 cup whole buckwheat (kasha), 1/3 cup millet and 1/3 quinoa. You should feel free to experiment with the grains. What I’ve learned is that white rice cooks a little more quickly than some of the others, so I prefer brown rice. Kasha has a strong flavor some people don’t like, although I prefer to toast the kasha in a skillet briefly after I finish frying the orzo; this enhances the flavor. I believe that using bulgur wheat causes the dish to be a little softer. I’m still playing around with this to refine the grain mixture.