Recipes I’ve Tried Recently #1

by Stephanie on January 28, 2014 · 0 comments

in Food & Nutrition

I try to cook at home often and I am always looking for new recipes.  I figured this might be a good series for the blog!  I’ll share the recipes I’ve tried and what I thought of them.  Hopefully it’ll inspire you to try new things and give you some good ideas.

Spicy Lentils with Sweet Potato & Kale

This recipe is pretty awesome.  It was just a little spicy and a little earthy, but in a good way.  The recipe called for red lentils.  I had a generic bag of lentils in my pantry so I used those.  No clue what the differences are!  The recipe also said to put a whole serrano pepper in the pot while cooking and take it out before serving.  I had a jalapeño so I chopped up about 3/4 of that and left it in.

lentil-sweetpotato-kale

One thing I did learn from my first foray in to lentils is that while they do not need to be pre-soaked, I do need to soak them.  While I’ve never had problems bean (beans, the magical fruit!) but the lentils cause me major bloating and gas (sorry for the TMI, but fair warning!)  Pre-soaking lentils can reduce this.  To reduce it even more you could boil the lentils for two minutes, take off the heat, and let soak for one hour.  I know I’ll be trying that next time!

Grade: A-

Dried Porcini Mushroom Risotto

This was an attempt to recapture a memory.  I took an MBA class in Italy and they wined and dined us (in addition to teaching us, of course) for 10 days.  I had this amazing mushroom risotto and was really surprised I liked it so much because I don’t like mushrooms.  The explanation was that it wasn’t button mushrooms like we eat so much in the U.S. but porcini mushrooms.

italy-pizza

(I can’t make risotto look appetizing in a picture so you get one of me in Italy instead.  Enjoying hot salami and french fry pizza!)

The attempt was a failure.  The recipe isn’t the problem.  It made a nice creamy risotto.  That tasted like mushrooms.  How dare it??  Apparently the Italians are better at making mushrooms appealing than I am.  This is not surprising.  If by chance you do fancy the shroom though, I bet you’ll like this recipe!  I will be looking for risotto recipes that include flavors I actually like.  Smart, I know. :)

Grade: D

Frozen Yogurt Trail Mix Bars

These bars are greek yogurt mixed with just about whatever you want.  I used diced strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, and granola.  You could add different fruit, dried fruit, chocolate chips, nuts, etc.  You put them in a pan to freeze then cut them into bars and keep them in the freezer as a cool snack.

froyobars

They turned out pretty good.  I used plain greek yogurt this time but next time I might use vanilla or just add a little vanilla or maple syrup to sweeten it up a little.  Definitely a recipe to play with since you can do so many different things with it.

Grade: B-

Cumin Lime Black Bean Quinoa Salad

When I found this recipe I realized I already had everything needed to make it.  I don’t think that’s ever happened before!  I totally messed up the first time… I didn’t put enough water in while I was cooking the black beans and they just burned to the pot.  Whoops!  Anyway, the salad is good.  Light and fresh tasting.

cumin-lime-blackbean-quinoa

It makes four meal-sized servings.  I ate it for lunch the first day but I think I would prefer this as a side dish.  I’d personally make some changes if I make it again.  I did roasted sweet potato instead of carrots (the recipe gives you the option).  Next time I might do two sweet potatoes instead of one.  I’d cut the cilantro finer and put a little less in.  I’d also make 1.5 times the dressing recommended.  I liked the flavor of the cumin and lime and wanted a little more of it.

Grade: B

 

Tried a new recipe recently?  Share in the comments!

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