Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sweet Potato and Apple Curried Soup

Sweet Potato and Apple Curried Soup
4 entree servings or 6 appetizer servings.
1 jumbo sweet potato (about 2 cups)
2 apples, peeled cored and diced
3 cups chicken stock
2 tsp onion powder (or some real onion)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tbsp mild curry powder (adjust if your curry powder is hotter)
1/2 tsp ginger powder
sour cream or yogurt for garnish
Wash sweet potato, stab generously with fork, and microwave until soft all the way through (approx. 15-20 minutes on high).
Meanwhile, put apples, chicken stock, and spices in a large soup pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer until sweet potatoes are done. Cut sweet potato in half and scoop flesh into pot. Stir until well combined. Simmer 10 minutes.
Puree using immersion blender or in batches in regular blender (do not fill past half full, as it can overflow). Add water as needed to reach desired consistancy.

Serve garnished with sour cream or plain yogurt. 
Freeze up to 3 months. Makes a great low-calorie (but filling and delicious) lunch option.  This is loosely "my" recipe in that I didn't specifically follow anyone else's and definitely wrote my own directions. I'm in love with cooking sweet potatoes in the microwave. I hate peeling those bad boys. This is one of my favorite soups.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Sushi Salad

I like sushi, and I have made some rolls in the past. The flaw is, of course, that I am lazy. This salad has all the sushi flavours I love, but skips the "make it into a roll" steps that really draw out the process. This recipe made waaaay too much for us, though, and I had to give away a few servings to a friend because I knew we'd never eat it all. Rather than having it as a side, I just added some imitation crab meat to make it a full meal. I really enjoyed it - and it will be a lovely lunch for me for the next couple days.

Unfortunately, it's a Cooking Light recipe, and they are pretty strict with their copyright, so I must ask you to check the recipe here: Sushi-Rice Salad . I did find their recipe unclear, as it called for 2 cups of rice and 2 cups of water, while my rice called for 2 parts water to 1 part rice... I did 2 cups rice and 4 cups water, which made a very large amount. But the dressing to rice ratio was perfect. I would advise cutting the whole thing in half, but doubling the water (ie. 1 cup rice, 2 cups water).

This recipe is not freezer friendly, but it was tastey and easy, so I thought I would pass it along. It would be lovely with an asian-flavour salmon on the side, an interesting potluck dish, or you could add whatever maki roll ingredients strike your fancy.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Redneck Cooking: Kool Aid Cake

I'm still on a quest to find a good lemonade cake. Don't tell me to google it. Those ice cream based monstrosities are not what I dream of.

So I set out to try adding the most potent artificial colors and flavours of my chidhood to the goodness of cake. My first attempt: Blue Raspberry, the most baffling of flavours.

The result was a little dense, but overall kind of good. Not "OMG fabulous" good, but good enough I'll be making lemon-lime cupcakes for St. Patrick's day. It would also work to just add the Kool Aid to a cake mix, but I never have a cake mix, so I did it from scratch.

Update: The strawberry mini-cupcakes were much tastier than the blue raspberry cake. At least in part because eating red food feels more normal than eating blue food. They would be really great for a kid to take to school for Valentine's Day, or for an office treat.

Kool Aid Cake

2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup oil
1 1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 packet Kool Aid, flavour of your choice (the kind you're supposed to add sugar to)

Preheat oven to 350*F.

Mix the dry ingredients, including Kool Aid. Add wet ingredients. Stir until well blended.

Pour into 8" or 9" square pan, or muffin tins. Bake 50-60 minutes for cake (shorter for cupcakes,probably 20-25 min, I haven't done that yet). Mini-cupcakes bake for 12 minutes (and look fantastic, and taste pretty darn good). Pictured below: strawberry.