Peanut Butter Eggs with Garlicky Green Beans

Peanut Butter Eggs with Garlicky Green Beans

This was inspired by a recent Food52 post about adding peanut butter to scrambled eggs. I am glad I resisted my initial “huh?” and went ahead and tried it. I am also glad I listened to my instinct saying garlic and spice would be the perfect additions. They are. You won’t regret this meal.

Serves 4

Ingredients:

8-12 eggs (2 or 3 pp – your choice), beaten

3 tbsps butter

2 tbsps peanut butter

1 small onion, halved and sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed

12 oz green beans, cut in half

Rice vinegar

Sesame oil

Sriracha or other spicy sauce

Salt

Method:

Start by cooking the green beans.  Heat about a tbsp of sesame oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add the garlic and onions.  Cook these for about 3-4 minutes, until softened.  Add the green beans and several good splashes of rice vinegar.  Cook these for 4-5 minutes, until bright green and tender but not soft.  Remove this all to a bowl.  Using the same pan over medium, melt half the butter.  Add the eggs and cook for 2 or 3 minutes, until they are starting to set some. Add the rest of the butter, and the peanut butter, and stir it all in together.  When the eggs are cooked, salt to taste, then divide them evenly onto 4 plates.  Top these with the garlicky green beans and onions, then drizzle with the hot sauce.

Chicken and Broccoli Honey Sriracha Quinoa

Chicken and Broccoli Honey Sriracha Quinoa

Ingredients:

1-½ lb chicken breast, cut into 1 inch pieces

5-6 cups broccoli florets

1 cup quinoa

2 tbsps butter, melted

2 tbsps honey

1 tbsp soy sauce

2 tsps (or more, to taste) sriracha

Oil for the pan

Salt  

Method:

Place the quinoa and 2 cups of water into a pot. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.  Cook for 15-20 minutes, until tender. Meanwhile, heat a bit of oil in a saute pan over medium high heat.  Add the broccoli and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 8-10 minutes, until the florets are tender but still have a hint of crunch left.  Remove these to a bowl then return the pan to the heat. Add a little more oil, followed by the chicken pieces. Give these a generous sprinkling of salt and a stir. Cook the chicken for as little as 5 minutes or as much as 10-12, depending on how large or small you cut your pieces and how crowded or not they are in the pan.  When they are cooked, turn off the heat and return the broccoli to the pan.

In a bowl that can fit all components, mix the butter,honey, soy sauce, and sriracha.  Add in the chicken, broccoli, and quinoa. Toss until it is all well coated. Taste to make any flavor adjustments before serving.

Curry Lentil Balls

Curry Lentil Balls

Ingredients:

1 cup lentils

3 cups stock, divided

1 small onion, roughly chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tbsp grated ginger

4 tsps curry powder, divided

2 tsps cumin, divided

1 tsps garlic powder

½ cup rolled oats

1 egg

3 tbsps tomato paste, divided

2 tbsps yogurt

Large handful of baby spinach, roughly chopped

½ cup almonds, whole, slivered, or sliced

2 tbsps butter

Salt

Oil

3-4 cups cooked rice

Method:

Place the lentils and 2 cups of the stock, as well as ½ cup of water, into a pot. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes, until they are tender but not mushy.  Scoop about ⅔ of these into a blender or food processor. Add to this 1 tbsp of the tomato paste, 2 tsps curry powder, 1 tsp cumin, the garlic powder, oats, egg, and a large pinch of salt. Pulse this until it is mostly smooth but not totally.  Remove all but about a tbsp of this into a bowl and mix in the rest of the lentils. Heat the oven to 375. Roll the mixture into about 2 inch balls and place onto a lined baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes. While they bake, start the sauce by heating a bit of oil in a saute pan over medium heat.  Add the onions and cook for 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for 2-3 minutes more. Add to this the remaining 2 tbsps of tomato paste, 2 tsps curry powder, 1 tsp cumin and a large pinch of salt and cook another minute or two. Pour in the remaining cup of stock, then add all this to the blender with the reserved tbsp of lentil mixture.  Add the yogurt and almonds. Blend until smooth. Return this to the saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the spinach and butter. Once the butter has melted, take off heat and taste to adjust salt level. Serve the lentil balls and sauce over the rice, topped with more almonds, if desired.

Beans, Beans, the Magical Fruit…

Beans, Beans, the Magical Fruit…

…the more you eat, the better for you, and the planet. A bit ago I ran across an article that was extolling the virtues of increasing bean consumption and reducing intake of red meat. Most of us at this point know about the health benefits of keeping meals of lean red meat to only once or twice a week at the most. Increasingly, however, it is being talked about as a choice for the planet,as well. Raising livestock for food contributes to environmental troubles in various ways, including increased methane, forest clear cutting, and transportation resources. Reducing consumption and/or switching to small production, local, grass fed beef can have a positive impact.

Though my family does not follow a vegetarian or vegan diet, I see the appeal and benefit and we do try to limit our meat intake. For boosting protein intake as well as satiety and overall nutrition, I try to cook with beans as often as my family will put up with. Lentils, garbanzos, black, white – we love them all. It is hard to pick a favorite bean dish, but today I choose to share one way I love to prepare black eyed peas. If you want to up the bean level in your life, this is a good start.

Black-Eyed Peas With Tomatoes and Capers

Ingredients:

1 small onion, diced

4 large tomatoes (one 28 oz can if making this off season)

2 cans black eyed peas, drained mostly but not totally

2 tsps dried oregano or 1 tbsp fresh

2 tbsps capers

Olive oil

Scant salt

Pepper

2 cups of your favorite cooked grain/grain-like food

Method:

Heat a skillet over medium and coat lightly with olive oil.  Add the onions and cook until translucent and softened, about 5 minutes.  Add the tomatoes and oregano and cook another 5 minutes. Toss in the black eyed peas and capers and stir in until just heated through.  The dish likely will need very little or no salt, due to the capers, but add salt and pepper to your liking. Serve over your grain of choice.  I prefer whole wheat couscous but this is equally delicious over rice, orzo, farro, riced cauliflower, etc, etc, or scooped onto crusty bread.

Tzatziki

Ingredients:

1 english cucumber, cut into small dice

16 oz plain whole milk yogurt

2 tbsp fresh chopped or 1 tbsp dried dill, optional

Juice of ¼ of a lemon

1 clove garlic, crushed

Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.  That’s it. You’re done. Use this on chicken, lamb, in a pita sandwich, with grains, wherever you want a little healthy tang and crunch!

Minimal Effort, Maximum Impact: Buttery Herbed Rice

Minimal Effort, Maximum Impact: Buttery Herbed Rice

Buttery Herbed Rice

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cup white or brown rice (or cauli-rice), cooked according to package directions

2-3 tbsps butter

One large or two small shallots, minced if you have the patience, or a fine chop is acceptable

¼ cup total of any mix of chopped fresh herbs – parsley, chives, basil, oregano, tarragon, thyme, etc, 1 tbsp if using dried

Salt

pepper

Method:

Cook rice according to package directions.  In a small saute pan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Add the shallots and cook until softened and translucent, 3-4 minute.  It is fine if they start to brown a bit on the edges. Remove from heat and stir in the herbs.  Stir this whole mixture into the rice and add salt and pepper to your liking.

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