Make Something New Every Day

This blog is inspired by all those who love to cook, whether experienced or not, and who continue to experiment with new ideas & ingredients, and best of all, share their passion with others.

The first entries are recipes prepared by the students of Lionel Wilson College Preparatory Academy in Oakland, CA. Fifteen students with varying cooking experience participated in my weekly workshop (via Tutorpedia), and successfully prepared various meals, snacks, and baked goods as part of an after-school program.

Along with the recipes from that class, I will continue to add new seasonal items, spanning every genre of the culinary world, as well as a helpful list of links to recipes, instructional videos, and places to shop and volunteer in your area.

Feel free to ask me questions and share your recipes and ideas as well. I look forward to cooking with you.

April 10, 2013

Under 300 Calories. Less than $2. Delicious. Nutritious. Real Fast Food.

It's hot. You're busy as ever with work, friends, family, the gym...

You want to eat something substantial, yet light. Delicious, yet healthy. Oh, and p.s., you're too busy to cook, and you have no money. 

Never fear! Behold the first of several of my favorite meals that address all of these issues.

Organic Girl Super Greens with Warm Roasted Potatoes and 
Kicky Pickled Ginger Vinaigrette 

1.25 oz greens (10 calories!)
1 medium yukon gold potato (about 110 calories)
2T vinaigrette (about 150 calories)

I am just crazy about this mix. Contrary to the serving suggestion, I find that when topped with something hearty like a potato, I can get about 4-5 servings from a 5oz package. 

For years I have agonized over the limpness of traditional "spring mix" greens. 

When the weather turns warm, I'm all about creating quick, satisfying salads topped with anything from potatoes to steak, and this uber nutritious mix of baby red chard, baby tat soi, baby spinach, baby green swiss chard, & baby arugula stands up to whatever I throw on it. Get the big container, make a big batch of dressing, and you'll find yourself eating and loving your veggies every day.

The Potatoes
I like any thin-skinned variety, and prefer fingerlings, as they are pretty small, roast quickly, and have an irresistible creamy texture. 

Rub potatoes with a little bit of olive oil, sprinkle with salt & pepper, and roast at 375' until tender (when pierced with a knife they offer some resistance), about 20-25 minutes. Larger potatoes like yukon golds can take longer to roast. If you have a microwave you can nuke them for 1-2 minutes to give them a running start, but be sure to finish them off in the oven to bring out their flavor. 

While the potatoes are roasting make a quick vinaigrette. I don't seem to tire of this basic recipe. Make about a 1/2 pint so you have it ready to go. Take half of it to work with you.

Ginger (peel & thinly slice about 5 slices; soak in about 1/3C of Seasoned Rice Vinegar for about 20 minutes)
Shallot (finely mince about 2 teaspoons)
Citrus (I like a couple tablespoons of freshly squeezed OJ)
Olive or Grapeseed Oil (the latter is just as healthy as the former, has a more delicate flavor, and doesn't congeal as much when refrigerated)
Salt & Pepper

Mince the pickled ginger, and combine with the vinegar, OJ, and shallot in a 1/2 pint jar. Sprinkle with a bit of salt & freshly ground pepper, and add about 1/4C of oil. Seal the jar with a lid and shake the hell out of it. Open it up, taste it, and adjust the seasoning. You may want to add 1t of honey or a bit of Tapatio (yes, Tapatio) to round it out. 

Assemble Your Salad
Top greens with sliced potatoes, or leave whole if they're smaller. Drizzle with some dressing, and enjoy! Take extra potatoes, greens & dressing to work for a perfectly satisfying lunch that won't weight you down.

(Nutritional Facts for a Yukon Gold Potato)