Thursday, April 29, 2010


Stay tuned....we will be back!  2 weeks ago all five college roommates gathered for a fun Seattle weekend.

 This past weekend, I was in Florida for a wedding.  Next weekend my parents will be in town......busy, busy!

Vicki has been cooking away at culinary school and needs a break from cooking 24/7. Check out her cool outfit below.  We promise we will be back. 

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Wheat Berry Salad w/ Apples and Mint, pg. 139

The citrus dressing was simple and speedy to make (fresh squeezed oranges + olive oil + apple cider vinegar + mint + salt). 5 pulses in the Magic Bullet and I had a tasty dressing ready to pour over green and red apples + toasted hazelnuts + cooked wheat berries. This will become my summer potluck dish for sure!

I'm not a big "fresh mint type-of-gal" but today I became a fan. In fact, I'm going to grow mint in my garden which is in the works. Apparently several of my yoga friends have started to sprout seeds and I missed that memo. Instead, I will be starting with small plants while exploring the latest trend of 2nd floor condo gardening. Edible plants will only up the cool factor considering my flashy colored pin wheels, ceramic gnombs, and gazing globe, which provide the appropriate old lady gardener feel. Click on Fern's blog titled Life on the Balcony to view fun ideas and tips!

Lorna creates recipes that "flavor grains to taste like apples". Yup, Ben liked another recipe made from grains.     -amy

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Any-Grain Scrambled Eggs With Salami, pg. 172

Summer hikes + hard salami + a block of chedder cheese = heaven.  Thanks to Diana, (yoga friend), this has become my new favorite hiking snack!  Last summer we went to Zion's National Park for a girl's weekend. Check out the photo to see the how much food was needed for one hike! 
Mr. Ben is going to lose readers.....he's actually starting to like the grain recipes!  His outrageous comments have really settled down.  Rating this a 4/5 grains, he told me that this recipe was like my Sunday morning hash and instead of potatoes there were grains.  The salami gave the eggs and grains a nice flavor, different from the standard sausage or bacon taste. This recipe is fairly simple.  Start with olive oil + onion + garlic, then add the diced salami and cook until it starts to brown.  Add your cooked grains of choice, which was wheat for us, and stir in your eggs to scramble. 

Notice the heap of shredded cheese over Ben's plate!  This has been one creative tactic used to obtain higher grain ratings!    -amy

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Blog & Business Envy!

Check out the amazing website from Jennifer of The Nourished Kitchen
She believes in the same philosophies of food as we do...whole food, real food and local! I love that she's made this passion into a business with "recipe card subscriptions" which you sign up to receive via good old snail mail...Awesome!
Perhaps we'll build off this idea with a focus on Whole Grains...Obviously.  We shall see what our grain future brings.
Cheers and Happy Easter :)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Bulgur Pilaf with Moraccan Roast Chicken, pg. 152

The moroccan spice rub in this recipe (Fresh Ginger, Cinnamon, Allspice, Cloves, Cardamom and Cayenne) is awesome!  It smells amazing and totally evokes a flavor that must be what Moracco tastes like!?!  The chicken is coated in this sauce and roasted with lemons and prunes, then served with a tasty pilaf made with Bulgur...very creative combination!
Did you know that Pilaf is a method of cooking, not a specific recipe or only rice based (although usually).  We studied pilaf in my 1st quarter of Culinary School.  Every day of the school period, we made pilaf...yes, for 10 straight weeks! and every new quarter that starts, there is a new 1st quarter class that will also learn the pilaf method, so we are always tasting and trying new pilaf.  Never once has someone made it without rice.  So, I found this intriguing.
Ok, on to what I wanted to explain, the Pilaf method.  Starting with some kind of fat (oil or butter), add your aromatics (onions, other veggies, etc.) and sweat them in the sweating them, you're emitting the flavor of the onion into the fat your cooking with.  Then, stir in your grain (rice, bulgur, creative!) and make sure to coat every grain with the fat and "toasting" the grain a little.  Then add a flavorful liquid (stock, or water with herbs and spices) and bring to a can add it hot, so it comes up to temp quicker.  Add a little bit of salt, but not too much.  As the grain absorbs your liquid, if it's too salty, you'll concentrate that flavor. Then cover and let it simmer, not boil, for however long it takes to cook your grain.  White rice & bulgur are about 20-25 minutes, brown rice is closer to 50.  You can also finish it in the oven at 325 if you have an oven safe pot.  Check it when you think it should be done to make sure the grain is cooked all the way through, and season to taste.  Add fresh herbs, toasted nut, etc.  Amazing dish every time.
Go and be creative with your cooking!  Here's a photo of the above mentioned recipe!...err never mind for now... issues with upload.  -Vicki

15 recipes down!  Moraccan Roast Chicken will be a family favorite, even Mr. Ben agrees.  As for the pilaf, I needed to figure out a plan for the leftovers.  The following day, I put a slab of round roast in crockpot and shredded the beef.  I added mango peach salsa to the bulgar pilaf and warmed it up.  The salsa bulgar, steak, fresh mozzarella balls (small), and salad were layered on warm wheat tortilla shells.  Whooolaaaa another grain girl meal! -amy