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Friday, June 24, 2016

Klunker's raspberry vinaigrette

Klunker's raspberry vinaigrette  

Here is another really delicious salad dressing/dip to make.  It is McDougall friendly, and it is even Mary's mini compliant.  

Ingredients:

2 cups fresh raspberries, washed
3/4 cup rice vinegar or any light vinegar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
dash of fresh ground pepper

Add all the above into a blender.  Blend until very smooth.  
Strain through a fine mesh strainer or you will be eating seeds, lots of seeds.  It is really better smooth.
Keep in the fridge, and serve over salads or as a dip.
ENJOY!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Klunker's easy mustard dressing

Klunker's easy mustard dressing

Ingredients notes - don't overreact to any of the ingredients, this is dressing, a condiment, so you are going to get a lot of of this.  
You can adjust the ingredients to make as much or as little as you want.  This is for a big batch.  It lasts a long time in the fridge.  You will use it all before it would ever go bad.  It can be used for dip too.

Ingredients:


1/2 cup dijon mustard
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup rice vinegar (you can use other vinegar's to change the flavor a bit, like white wine, red wine, apple cider, or white balsamic)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (you can add more if you want, I sometimes do, start with 1/4 cup (quarter of a cup) and go from there.
1/2 teaspoon salt
dash of pepper

Blend together well.  Put in a jar of your choice, and store in the fridge.  This travels very well.  Use on anything.  I dip potatoes into it, fries, on salads....the list goes on.  I hope you enjoy.


Creamy version:

Add the above ingredients, add 1c of cooked (canned), drained chickpeas.  Put in a good blender and blend until very smooth.
It will be thick, you can eat as is, or thin out with more vinegar.  I like it thick. :)
Enjoy!!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Mushroom onion stock (IP recipe)

Mushroom onion stock (IP recipe)

I really like all kinds of stocks.  Most of the time, I make a stock of carrots, onions, garlic, celery and any odds and ends I have saved in the freezer.  It always turns out great too.  But, from time to time, I love to make some great mushroom and onion stock.  It is delicate and so good.  I love using it in my Asian soups, and anything that requires stock.
This is a recipe for the Instant Pot®, but you could make in a big pot on the stove too.

Ingredients:

10 dried shiitake mushrooms, cleaned (I just rinse the off)
2 large yellow onions, peeled and cut into quarters
1 whole head of garlic, tops just cut off, otherwise keep whole
5 stalks of green onion, cut in thirds
1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
5 whole, black peppercorns 
7 cups water



Combine all the ingredients into the IP.  Cover and set to manual mode, 45 minutes.  Yes, it seems a long time, but you are wanting a very infused stock, trust me, it works well.  
When the time is up, let it NPR.  Strain through cheese cloth and a fine mesh strainer.  This will give you a very clear stock.

For stove top directions, combine all the above, bring to a boil over medium high heat.  Cover and reduce the heat to low, and let cook for one and a half hours.  Don't be tempted to check it, you want all the steam and liquid to stay in there.  After the time is up, allow to cool on the stove top, and strain from there.  
I store mine in 2 1/2 cup jars.  They will last for a week in the fridge, or you can freeze the stock too.
I hope you give it a try.  It is super easy and adds amazing flavor to your meals.  

Friday, June 10, 2016

Klunker's Korean Kimchi Jjigae

Klunker's Korean Kimchi Jjigae
I have been waiting a while to make this soup.  I have been off of tofu for a while, and so I needed a great recipe to eat some again.  I am so glad that I chose this one.
There are many ways to make this soup, and there are many inspirations out there.  This is my own recipe, and it hit the spot.  
I included some pictures of the actual product that I used, in case you need something to look at when buying.  
This soup is spicy, but with some good steamed rice, it is amazing.  I hope you give it a try and love it as much as I did.

Ingredients:

1 cup chopped kimchi (I use my own, but you can use store kind too.  Just make sure it is vegan and no oil) 
1/4 cup juice from kimchi
1/2 large onion, peeled and sliced thin
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 block extra firm tofu, drained and cut into bite sized cubes
2 cup mushroom or veggie stock
1 teaspoon peanut butter (optional, but adds amazing depth)
2 teaspoons maple syrup
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
1-2 teaspoons hot chili flakes (gochugaru)
1 tablespoon Korean chili paste (gochujang)
2 green onions, chopped
1-2 teaspoons sesame seeds to garnish




Instructions:

Place a large earthenware or heavy bottom pot on the stove, over medium heat. Let heat up for a minute.  Add the onions and kimchi.  Saute for 10 minutes, or until onions start to soften.  Add the mushrooms and garlic, stir well, saute another 5 minutes.





After 5 minutes, add the remaining ingredients, and stir well.  Make sure the paste and peanut butter is dissolved.  
Stir carefully, so you don't break apart the tofu.





Cover the pot, and simmer on medium for 20 minutes.  Check often and stir.



While it is cooking, make some rice to go with the soup.  It is great to put the soup over the rice.  
Check for seasoning or heat.  If you want it spicier, add more of the flakes.
Here is a picture of the product I used.







Thursday, June 9, 2016

Klunker's one pot cilantro lime rice

 Klunker's one pot cilantro lime rice

Well, the title was long enough.  But I guess if you are making a whole meal in one recipe, the title can be a little longer. :)
I have been really working hard at making simple meals (I won't ever give up on harder meals, but I have also been a little more busy, so simple is winning more often.)  This is one meal that really was easy, and took less than 30 minutes from start to finish.  
I love the flavors that come together in this meal.  It really is nice when everyone (ingredients) play nice and compliment each other.  I think my favorite part of this meal was the addition of the butternut squash.
I used white rice for this meal, but you could use brown.  I will add instructions for that at the end.  

Ingredients:

2 cups medium or short grain rice
2 1/2 cups water

2 cups cubed butternut squash (I got the pre-cut from Costco) but you could do it from a whole squash too.
1 large shallot (about 2 tablespoons worth) minced
2 teaspoons chopped garlic

1/2 cup chopped mushrooms (I used cremini)
1 15 oz. can RoTel (if you can find the lime and cilantro, use that, otherwise just use the regular kind)
1 14.5 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 teaspoon cumin
1 bunch cilantro, chopped (about 2/3 cup when chopped)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

(below are some of the ingredients I used)





I rinse my rice several times before I use it, so if you don't do that, you can skip this part.
In the large pot, combine the rice and add some water.  With your hand, wash and "knead" the rice, getting off all the dust.  Dump the water, and do this again until the water is clear.  Drain one last time into a fine mesh strainer, and then add back into your pot.
Add the water for cooking (2 1/2 cups)



Next, add the squash, mushrooms, shallots, and garlic. 




 Don't mix into the rice, just move around in the water (you want to keep the rice on the bottom)
Sprinkle the salt and cumin over the top of the mix.
Now, turn the heat on to medium high, and bring the rice mix to a simmering boil.
When it comes to a simmering boil, cover and reduce the heat to low.  Set your timer to 20 minutes.  Do not open during cooking.
While it is cooking, you will want to juice your limes, cut your cilantro, and drain your RoTel and beans.



When the 20 minutes is up, avoid the temptation to open the lid.  Move it off the heat and let it sit for another 5-10 minutes.
After 5-10 minutes, take the lid off and add the lime juice, RoTel, black beans, and cilantro. With a wooden spoon, carefully stir everything together.  As you do, some of the squash will break apart, and that is ok, you want it to be kind of creamy. 








 Serve while hot with a couple of wedges of lime.
You could add some additions to this meal too.  Corn would be great, or avocado.  You could also put into a corn tortilla and add some salsa.  

***For brown rice, add an additional 1/2 cup of water to cook, and increase the time to 28-30 minutes***

I hope you give this easy meal a try.  It is full of flavor and will fill you up.  I have a lot left over, and am thinking stuffed bell peppers sound good. :)


If you have leftovers, you can make stuffed peppers from it.  I took the rice and stuffed it into red bell pepper halves.  I rolled the top in some panko bread crumbs and baked 375° for 35 minutes.  I topped it with some homemade salsa verde.  It was so good!!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Klunker's yellow rice

Klunker's yellow rice

I have been reading many articles about the great health benefits of turmeric.  It is like a super spice.  It can help with so many things, and adding it to my diet daily is my goal.
If you want to read some great things about the health benefits of turmeric, just go to google and type in "turmeric health benefits".   It will pull up so many articles and recipes.
I went to my local store, and they had fresh turmeric root.  They were super cheap too, so I purchased them.  I then proceeded to look at them daily in the fridge.  I had no clue what to do with it.  It was pretty, and it made a nice ornament to my fridge, but I also knew they would go bad soon.
I asked my good friend Claudine, and she suggested that I use it in rice.  (actually, she gave me many idea's)  

Here is my recipe and I have to say, I will make this often.

Ingredients:

2c Jasmine rice
3c water or veggie broth
1 tablespoon freshly grated turmeric (or you can use 1 teaspoon powder)
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons dried currants (you could use raisins or golden raisins)

One thing I have learned over time, is the secret to good rice is the rinse and knead technique.  You need to wash your rice, and use your fingers to agitate it. Drain, and do it again.  Do it until the water is clear.  I usually do this 5-6 times.
Then I pour the rice into a mesh strainer and do one final rinse under running water.

Milky water after first agitation.

Water after final rinse

Now, add your cooking water or broth, and set on the stove over medium high.
Add your turmeric and other spices.



Garlic



Cumin



Salt



Currants



Stir together well



Bring to a soft boil, cover and reduce the heat to low.
Allow to cook for 20 minutes.  After 20 minutes remove from heat and do not take lid off.  Let sit for 10 more minutes off heat.
Remove lid after 10 minutes and fluff with a fork.  



Serve hot, cold in a salad, or however you like rice.  It is great as main course with some greens on the side.  Add some fresh ground pepper at the end to help the absorption of the turmeric even more. 
Fresh turmeric has an amazing flavor, one I think is different than the powder. 
I hope you give this a try, and enjoy it as much as I did.  
Thanks again Claudine for the inspiration!!