Cooking Club: Week 23

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groceries

I am assuming you have sea salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil and a higher heat oil, such as avocado oil or coconut oil. Check your stock on these before you head to the market, and check off any other items you may already have. As you continue to use these recipes, you will see repetition of my favorite ingredients. For example, while real maple and pine nuts are pricey pantry staples, they won’t sit in the pantry, you’ll use them in upcoming weeks. Use bulk bins at your local health food store to buy in smaller quantities if you prefer.

Your List i

Produce

Dry Ingredients

Meat & Dairy

Frozen


recipe 01: tofu & vegetable green curry bowls

serves 6

There are a handful of resources on how to make curry paste from scratch, and if you are looking for extra credit, go ahead with that step because it would be great to have on hand (you can freeze it!). For the sake of ease, I am combining some fresh aromatics, like lemongrass and jalapeño, in tandem with a prepared curry paste, just to brighten it up. You can find curry paste at larger grocers or health food stores, as well as online. The Thai Kitchen brand is milder than the Mae Ploy brand, so adjust accordingly. Start with the two tablespoons called for and go up from there. If you can only find red or yellow curry paste at the store, go with that. Yellow is usually a bit sweet, and red a bit spicier, but any of them will work here. Your broth will just be a different color.

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Tips of The Week

Prep Ahead: The vegetables may be chopped in advance. As I keep saying with every soup and stew, the dish can be made in its entirety in advance, and rewarmed. Rice may be cooked in advance.

Kid Friendly: The heat level will depend wildly on your curry paste. As mentioned, the Thai Kitchen brand is quite mild, and Mae Ploy is hotter. You can always take out a portion for the kids, then stir in more curry paste after.

Carnivore Addition: Sub shrimp or chicken in place of the tofu. Sear the shrimp in batches before continuing with the curry, and stir them in in the last moment to warm through. For the chicken, use rotisserie chicken, or sear strips in advance in a similar fashion noted for the shrimp.


Ingredients
 

2 Tbsp. coconut oil, divided
12 oz. firm tofu, drained and pressed between dishtowel or paper towels
1 small yellow onion, small dice
1 lemongrass stalk, outer leaves removed, white and light green parts
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, seeds removed and minced
1 tsp. sea salt
2-3 Tbsp. green curry paste, depending on brand and heat preference
1 small head of cauliflower, broken into small florets
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced into 1” cubes
1 1/4 cups vegetable broth
8 oz. sugar snap peas
2 13.5 oz. cans coconut milk
2 tsp. coconut sugar or light brown sugar
Juice of two limes
Dash of fish sauce, optional but suggested

for serving

Rice
Cilantro or basil, chopped

Instructions

In a large Dutch oven or pot, heat 1 Tbsp. of the coconut oil over medium heat. Cut the pressed tofu into small 1” cubes, and stir fry them quickly in the oil until the outsides start to get crispy.

Remove the tofu from the pot and set aside on a plate.

Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil, add the onion, and sauté for a minute until just softened.

Smash the lemongrass around with the back of a knife until fragrant, and then mince it. Add the lemongrass, garlic, jalapeño, salt, curry paste, and sauté for another minute. Add the cauliflower florets, chopped sweet potato, and broth. Cover the pot and let the vegetables steam for 10 minutes.

Remove the cover, turn the heat to low, and add the snap peas, coconut milk, and sugar. Put the cover on ajar, and let everything simmer another 8-10 minutes. Uncover, and if the vegetables are tender to your taste, turn off the heat.

Stir in the lime juice and a generous dash of fish sauce. Stir the tofu back in. Let the curry cool down slightly and taste for seasoning. Need salt? Add a splash of fish sauce. Prefer it thinner or brothier? Add vegetable broth or coconut milk.

For serving, start with a portion of rice, and top with the green curry. Garnish with chopped herbs and enjoy. Leftovers will keep for a week. 

Nutrition Information

per serving

  • calories
    516
  • fat
    38 g
  • carbs
    38 g
  • protein
    16 g

recipe 02: melissa’s chicken tinga tacos

serves 4

This recipe is from Melissa Coleman, of the blog The Fauxmartha and book, The Minimalist Kitchen. A crowd favorite from her book are these tacos. You make an easy, almost enchilada-type blender sauce, and stir it in with the shredded chicken. The rest is just assembly.

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Tips of The Week

Prep Ahead: The entire sauce and chicken mixture can be made in advance. Warm it with a splash more broth or water to loosen it.

Make it Work Twice: more tacos? Burrito bowls? Enchiladas?

Kid Friendly: I used one chipotle and it was plenty mild for my kids.

Vegetarian: I don’t really like using faux meats, but suppose those options would work here. If you are going for more of a ground beef-style taco filling, I like sautéed onions, mushrooms, and lentils that you could then stir into the above Tinga sauce. The Cauliflower “chorizo” from week 20 would also be an alternative, though it may get pretty spicy with the second round of chipotles, so tread lightly.



 Ingredients

1 Tbsp. avocado or olive oil
1 cup roughly chopped yellow onion
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. cumin
3/4 cup canned, crushed fire-roasted tomatoes
1/4 cup stock - vegetable or chicken
1/4 tsp. fine sea salt or 1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
3 cups shredded chicken (rotisserie chicken is great)

For serving

Corn tortillas
2-3 avocados
Cilantro, chopped
Diced red onion
Crumbled cotija cheese
Lime wedges


Instructions

In a large skillet over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the onion and sauté until tender, about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook another minute. Stir in the chipotle peppers, oregano, cumin, and toast another minute. Add in the tomatoes, stock, and salt. Bring to a simmer, and cook for 7 minutes. Allow it to cool.

In a high-speed blender, or with an immersion blender, blend the tomato mixture until smooth. Return the blended sauce to the pan over low heat.

Add the shredded chicken and cook for about 5 minutes to warm through. Taste and salt if necessary.

Warm your tortillas over the stove. Smash some avocado on the bottom, add a spoonful of the chicken mixture, cilantro, red onion, and a sprinkle of cotija. Squeeze the lime wedges over the top.

Nutrition Information

per serving

  • calories
    545
  • fat i
    36 g
  • carbs i
    35 g
  • protein
    26 g

recipe 03: goodness wraps

serves 4

If four sounds like too many wraps, know the components will save well to be made up for lunch the following day. My go-to tortillas for wraps and burritos are the organic whole wheat olive oil ones at Trader Joes. I want to love the Ezekiel or brown rice ones, but they do not wrap well. Not into wraps? Make these into bowls.

If pickled onions aren't your thing, substitute shredded cabbage or beets for color and texture. But you should try them if you haven’t!

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Tips of The Week

Prep Ahead: Roast the sweet potatoes and mix your dressing together. It calls for cooked rice, so if you need to do that step, add it here.

Make it Work Twice: All these components save well. We will do wraps one night, and then I will make a salad or bowl for lunch the next day with the leftovers. This sauce makes a great dressing for bowls and salads.

Kid Friendly: I leave out the onions and kale and add a little bit of scrambled eggs in there. It may sound weird, but alongside everything else, the egg works for a bit of protein.

Lower Carb: Go for the bowls over the wrap. You can use riced cauliflower in place of the rice.


Ingredients

for the wraps

2 medium sweet potatoes, cubed
extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil
1/2 tsp. sea salt
2 tsp. dried basil

1 bunch of kale, stemmed and chopped
extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice
1 cup cooked brown rice
2 large avocados
microgreens, optional
4 larger tortillas or wraps of choice (here is a grain-free option)

For the onions

1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. cane sugar
1 small red onion, sliced thin

For the sauce

1/3 cup tahini
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp. water
1 tsp. sea salt
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
3 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. turmeric
dash of cayenne
freshly ground pepper

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 425' and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment. Pile on your sweet potatoes, drizzle with the oil, sprinkle with salt and basil, and toss to coat. You want all the potatoes lightly coated. Spread them in an even layer. Roast the potatoes for 25 minutes.

Quick "pickle" your onions. Put the vinegar, salt, and sugar in a bowl and stir. Add in the sliced onions, and let them sit (if you like your onions softer, warm up the vinegar first).

To make the dressing, combine the tahini, garlic, olive oil, water, salt, maple, cider vinegar, turmeric, cayenne, fresh pepper, and stir everything to mix. Taste and season as needed.

Put the kale in a bowl. Drizzle with a bit of oil, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Massage it all to soften and marinate.

Assembly time! Or do bowls. Lay out your wrap. Smash in some avocado and then add big spoonfuls of rice, kale, sweet potatoes, pickled onion, microgreens, and then a generous drizzle of the sauce. Wrap everything up tight. Slice in half and enjoy!

Nutrition Information

per wrap

  • calories
    587
  • fat
    35 g
  • carbs
    65 g
  • protein
    13 g

recipe 04: tropical green smoothies

Makes 2 Smoothies

I add the riced cauliflower to up the fiber and it also makes it creamy like a banana does, with less sugar and carbs. That is not a concern for my kids, so I use bananas for them, but I have grown to like the less sweet smoothies. 

You can easily add a vanilla protein powder to these if you are looking for a higher protein breakfast/snack. 

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Tips of The Week

Kid Friendly: This is the easiest way to get more greens into my kids! If your mango and pineapple are not very sweet, add in half a banana.


Ingredients

1 cup mango chunks, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup pineapple chunks, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup frozen rice cauliflower
Handful of baby spinach
1 Tbsp. hemp seeds
1 cup coconut milk
Big splash of coconut water or water


Instructions

In a blender, combine the mango, pineapple, riced cauliflower, spinach, hemp seeds, coconut milk, and coconut water. Blend on high until completely smooth. Add more liquid if needed.

Divide between two glasses and enjoy.

Nutrition Information

per smoothie

  • calories
    342
  • fat
    27 g
  • carbs
    25 g
  • protein
    6 g