Peoplewhoeat’s Weblog

September 18, 2010

Irma’s Amazing Eggplant Mush

This is a delicious Georgian specialty, one of my absolute favorites…this is my teacher’s recipe, and it’s one of the best!

1 kg (approximately) eggplant
1 cup walnuts
1 clove garlic
1 onion
Spices (use what you can to taste of the following):
1 tablespoon saffron
1 tablespoon dry coriander
1 tablespoon uckho suneli (Georgian spice blend, don’t use the Russian version…its very different, but yellow curry powder is a possible substitute)
salt to taste
pepper to taste
splash of olive oil
splash of white wine vinegar

Roast the eggplant in a lightly oiled pan (20-25 minutes) until golden.

Mix the walnuts, garlic, spices and vinegar and oil in a blender to make a paste.

Mush the roasted eggplant, chopped onion, and spice mixture together.

Eat as a salad, or serve on top of bread.


May 30, 2010

A “Doh!” Moment

Filed under: Side dish, Side Dishes, Vegetarian — Tags: , , , — peoplewhoeat @ 11:08 pm

You can roast broccoli! I can’t believe I had never realized this until my lovely friend, Sara, clued me in. Broccoli is absolutely phenomenal this way, a lovely combination of crispy and mooshy… and best of all, it isn’t really any more involved to prepare than regular old steamed broccoli! Just keep in mind, you’ll need much more broccoli for this that you do steamed broccoli. I’ll often just have two heads of roasted broccoli for my dinner

Broccoli, washed and cut into chunks (as you would for steaming)
a few cloves chopped garlic
a good glug of olive oil

Toss the broccoli, olive, oil and garlic together in your favorite roasting pan, making sure that the broccoli is well-coated with the olive oil (don’t skimp on the olive oil, most of it will stay on the pan, and if you don’t use enough it won’t crisp properly.) You can bake it at any temperature if you have other things in the oven, but I usually put it in at 400F for about 20-25 minutes (and leave it in longer if it isn’t crisped yet). Pull it out of the oven, and fish the broccoli out with a fork, allowing it to drip if necessary. Transfer to a paper towel to remove extra oil, then serve.
Welcome to the New World Order (for broccoli)

November 30, 2008

A Twist on Thanksgiving

Filed under: Dinner, Side dish, Side Dishes, Special occasions — Tags: , , , , — peoplewhoeat @ 7:05 pm

Although I love cooking and food, Thanksgiving has never really been a favorite holiday of mine.  I’ve never enjoyed turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, or pumpkin pie, so the Thanksgiving feast usually turned into a sad little plate of mashed potatoes and cranberry jelly.  The rest of my family wasn’t averse to experimenting with the traditions, though, and we’ve developed some very tasty twists on the tradition.

My aunt made this turkey recipe, and it was delicious.  It doesn’t have the impressive presentation you get from roasting a whole bird, but it sure tastes a lot better:

One of my favorite recipes of all time, which fits perfectly into a Thanksgiving feast (or really any other meal) is spicy roast sweet potato wedges.

Spicy Roast Sweet Potato Wedges:

1 tsp coriander seed
½ tsp fennel seed
½ tsp dried oregano
½ tsp dried red pepper flakes
1 tsp kosher salt
2 lb medium sweet potatoes
3 Tbl vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 425; grind together first four
ingredients; cut potatoes in 1 inch wedges; toss
together with oil, ground spices and salt. Spread
out in a shallow pan, roast 20 minutes; turn
wedges over; roast an additional 15-20 minutes, until golden and tender.

Happy Thanksgiving!

June 16, 2008

Something on the side

Filed under: Healthy, Light lunch, Side dish, Vegetarian — Tags: , , , , — peoplewhoeat @ 1:38 am

Everyone needs their little bit on the side. Side dish, I mean. Stuffed capsicums are a sunny, summery side which are delicious and flavourful. What I really like about them, apart from their simplicity, is that they are robust and present beautifully. Their strong, though not overwhelming, flavour means they can stand up to whatever other mains you provide – I think they would be marvellous with plainly grilled meat or steak (mm…steak) – but they are also filling enough for any vegetarians you may be catering for (as a former vegetarian, I can attest that a little thoughtfulness in this area is much appreciated!).

The recipe below reflects what I did. The recipe easily stretches and measurements are versatile. My capiscums were somewhat small and I had a little zuchinni left over; you could use more capiscum or different stuffings. I considered adding a topping of dried breadcrumbs and cheese to add a little crunch!

Zuchinni-stuffed capiscums

4 capiscum, halved, with the stalk and white pith and seeds inside removed (I halved either lengthways or sideways depending on which side seemed most stable; generally I would say halve the capsicum along the width)
1 zuchinni, grated using the largest holes on a box grater
Pinch dried thyme and dried basil
4 tomatoes, diced
2 – 4 tablespoons parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius and oil a baking sheet.

Combine zuchinni and dried herbs. Stuff inside hollowed-out capsicum halves.

Place diced tomatoes on top of zuchinni inside the capsicum halves.

Sprinkle with parmesan.

Place on oiled baking sheet.

Bake until filling is cooked and capsicum are soft but not collapsed, about 20 – 30 minutes depending on the size of your beasts.

Eat well…life is too short not to!


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