Category Archives: Side dishes

Barrett’s Baby Bok Choy

Aight, Imma be straight wichu: this has been in my backlog for months. And it’s not because I don’t think it’s good.

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I actually can’t remember anything The Chef has cooked for me that wasn’t awesome… barring one incident with some enchiladas. And that was a disaster mostly because I was hopping around the kitchen on one leg with a large knife and we were too tired to be cooking anything more than frozen chicken nuggets. (And we actually forgot to turn the oven on when we tried to cook those, so that kind of indicates what level we were on that day.)

Anyway, I’ve been less than anxious to post this only because it’s not in my comfort zone, meaning it is not soup or pasta or a dip made with cream cheese.

But you know what? That’s exactly why it needs posting. This dish actually has some nutritional value and is pretty tasty when you sauce it up all Asian-like. And it’s downright different. So Free Yo Mind, y’all. The rest will follow.

6 oz baby bok choy, cleaned
2 tsp vegetable oil
2 tsp garlic. minced
1 tsp ginger, minced
2 tbsp scallions, thinly sliced
1 /2 tsp sesame oil
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Blanch and shock the bok choy.
  2. Heat the vegetable oil in a saute pan. Sweat the ginger, scallions, and garlic until tender.
  3. Add bok choy. Season with salt, pepper, and sesame oil.
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Filed under Asian food, Side dishes, Veggies

Wild Mushroom and Leek Wild Rice Salad

I have not posted in a while, but that is because I have not been making new recipes recently.  We have so many great recipes on this site, and I had fallen into a trap of cooking the same 4 or 5 things because they are so tasty.   Yesterday I decided to browse my list of “to make” recipes and came across one that for months I kept meaning to make.  When it came down to buying the ingredients, it always just looked a little too healthy.  Since the holidays are around the corner, I thought it best to start getting the health in now.  This is a recipe for mushroom and leek wild rice I saw on Closet Cooking, with my own tweaks.  It is so tasty and surprisingly filling.  It reminds me of a healthier version of my mushroom and leek risotto recipe!  I highly recommend making this.  I served the rice over a bed of baby greens and added a couple slices of skirt steak for extra protein (quickly marinated in a soy, garlic, onion, sugar mixture and grilled).  
Wild rice takes longer to cook then regular rice so start it first!  The mushroom, leek, herb, rice mixture is tossed with balsamic vinaigrette.  Feel free to use your favorite recipe, I wrote down a standard one below.– ts

1 cup wild rice
2 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon oil
2 – 3 leeks green and white parts cleaned and sliced
2 cloves garlic
8- 10 ounces mushrooms (sliced) – I used a mix of cremini, shiitake and oyster
1 teaspoon thyme (chopped)
salt and pepper to taste
a large handful chopped pecans
about a 1/4 cup balsamic vinaigrette (recipe below)

  1. Simmer the wild rice in the broth on medium-low heat, covered, until it is tender and it has absorbed all of the broth, about 50-60 minutes and remove from heat.  Drain excess liquids.
  2. Heat the oil and melt the butter in a large dutch oven/pan.
  3. Add the leeks and saute until tender, about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
  5. Add the mushrooms, thyme, salt and pepper and saute until the mushrooms are just starting to caramelize, about 10-15 minutes.
  6. Mix the wild rice, mushrooms, pecans and balsamic vinaigrette
Balsamic Vinaigrette
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon honey
1-2 large cloves garlic minced
chopped herbs (optional)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1. Mix/shake everything together

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Filed under Main Course, Rice, Salad dressings, Side dishes, Veggies

Mashed Parsnips

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As The Chef prepared these on Sunday, our self-proclaimed “foodie,” Emily, asked, “what are we making?” To which The Chef replied, “mashed parsnips.”

“Oh-uhhhhh, OK, riiiiiiight,” Emily said, acting casual and stuffing a Reduced Fat Wheat Thin into her mouth.

“Do you know what parsnips are?” I asked. “Not exactly,” she said shamefully.

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But we are not about the shame here at Nummy! So I simply explained to her that a parsnip is pretty much what would happen if a potato and a carrot made a baby. And then I started thinking about how that would be like THE most inappropriate Veggie Tales episode ever, but it also might be kind of interesting… and then the lobster we were cooking to eat with these were ready, and that snapped me out of it.

Anyway, Emily doesn’t like mashed potatoes, but she thought these were “delish,” so we declare this a culinary victory. Observe:

1 pound of parsnips, peeled and diced large
1 cup half & half
2 tbsp butter
salt to taste
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp finely chopped chives

  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add parsnips and cook until fork tender.
  2. Drain parsnips and add the remaining ingredients.
  3. Mash to your desired level of creaminess.

The Chef points out that you can also do this with half potatoes and half parsnips if you want a less sweet result. Either way, it’s a go-to winter side dish.

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Filed under Comfort food, Potatoes, Side dishes, Veggies

Three Bean Salad

Everyone has their redneck guilty pleasure right?  I believe RipleyPickles is canned smoked oysters.  I secretly (well not so secret anymore) love me some canned three bean salad.  I normally hate canned anything, except three bean salad .  The only thing canned foods are good for is your Mayan 2012 End of the World emergency kit and Thanksgiving food drives.   I have seen fancy three bean salad in jars at gourmet food stores, but I still think it contains loads of sodium, preservatives and additives.  I decided it is time to make my own!  I scoured my cookbooks and the internets for a good recipe.  I think I came up with the closest thing to canned.  – ts

3 quarts water
1 tablespoon table salt
8 ounces green beans, ends snapped, snapped or cut into one-inch pieces
8 ounces yellow/wax beans, same
1 can kidney beans rinsed and drained (fresh beans were just too time consuming so used canned whoops!)
1/2 a red onion, diced small
3/4 cup red vinegar
1/4 cup oil
3/4 cup brown sugar
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Bring the water to a boil. Add the salt and the beans, cover and cook for about 5 minutes, until tender-crisp. Blanch them in ice water and let drain for at least 10 minutes and more if needed.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the cooked green, wax and kidney beans and onion.
  3. Meanwhile, in a saucepan combine the vinegar, oil and sugar. Bring it to a boil on the stove. Remove it immediately, and pour it over the beans and onions. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Let marinade in the refrigerator for at least an hour.

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Filed under Appetizers, Beans, Salad, Side dishes, Veggies

Beets with their Greens and Aioli

It is no secret that I love beets.  I once did a beta carotene only diet with my roommate.  We lasted about 48 hours until we read that your skin can turn orange.  Prune restaurant in NYC is one of the best and definitely in my top 5 restaurants in NYC.  If you live there or are visiting you must go for dinner or brunch.  The bone marrow will amaze you.  It is also located on my favorite intersection in NYC (aka nexus of the universe) 1st and 1st.  Anyways back to the beets, I think beets simply roasted with olive oil add cheese and nuts is always a tasty treat.  However, Prune serves their beets with this amazing aioli sauce and the beet greens.  I finally got my hands on the recipe.  ENJOY!  – ts

16–20 small (not baby) beets with greens attached
Coarse salt
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 tsp. dijon mustard
1 egg yolk, at room temperature
3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup mild olive oil

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Cut greens off beets, leaving 2″ of the stalks attached to beets. Wash greens and beets and set aside separately.
  2. Roast beets in oven (using method at right) until soft, about 1 hour. Unwrap beets and set aside to cool, then peel.
  3.  Meanwhile, cook beet greens in a medium pot of boiling salted water over high heat until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain, squeezing out excess water, and put into a bowl. Toss with extra-virgin olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside to cool.
  4. To serve, spoon some of the aïoli (recipe below) onto 4 small plates, then divide greens and beets between plates, putting greens on top of aïoli and beets on top of greens. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Aioli recipe

  1. Put garlic,  mustard, and 1 tsp. salt into a medium bowl and use the back of a wooden spoon to crush them into a paste.
  2. Add egg yolk and whisk until pale.
  3. Add lemon juice and whisk until frothy.
  4. Gradually add vegetable oil, and olive oil, in slow steady streams, whisking constantly, until oils are incorporated and mixture is emulsified. Adjust seasonings.

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Filed under Appetizers, Party food, Restaurant Recipes, Side dishes, Veggies

Carciofi alla romana (Roman style artichoke)

I know it is not artichoke season, but I love them.  If I can still find them at my market, I will make them.  In Rome I had the best artichoke I have ever eaten at Il Matriciano restaurant near the Vatican.  It was addicting, and I could have eaten about 10 of them. Below is a traditional Roman artichoke recipe from Mario Batali.  -ts

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt, to taste
1 tablespoon plus 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 artichokes, halved and trimmed outer leaves, choke removed, held in acidulated water (fancy talk for lemon water)
1/2 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup boiling water

  1. In a small bowl, combine the parsley, mint, garlic, salt and 1 tablespoon olive oil.
  2. In the cavity of the artichoke from which the choke was removed, place 1 teaspoon of the herb mixture. Repeat this procedure with the remaining chokes.
  3. Arrange all chokes in a deep pan that keeps them close together, in other words, one that doesn’t give them room to fall over.
  4. Add the wine, boiling water, remaining oil and a pinch of salt.
  5. Cover and simmer on the stovetop 1 hour. Serve hot or at room temperature.

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Filed under Appetizers, Italian food, Side dishes, Veggies

Barrett’s Black Bean Cakes

The Chef sent me this recipe months ago, and it stalled out in my Inbox because black beans – or beans of any kind, really – often bore the crap out of me.

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But the more I started looking at it, the more intrigued I became. The Mexican seasonings, the chorizo, and the suggestion that you serve it alongside quail – arguably the most adorable and delectable of tiny game birds – finally changed my mind.

The Chef also mentioned this is one of his favorite recipes from the CIA Cookbook, and whether that means “Central Intelligence Agency” or “Culinary Institute of America” to you, it’s pretty badass either way.

1 lb dried black beans
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup chorizo sausage
2/3 cup yellow onion, diced medium
2 tbsp garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup cornmeal

  1. Soak bean overnight in enough cold water to cover them by 3 inches.
  2. Drain beans, place in a pot, and add the chicken broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until beans are tender, about 45 minutes. Drain.
  3. Cook the chorizo over medium heat in a saute pan until the fat is rendered and the chorizo is slightly crispy.  Add onions, garlic and jalapeno, and saute until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Add the cumin and chili powder and saute until fragrant. Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool.
  5. Combine beans, chorizo mixture, egg, cilantro, lime juice and salt.  Mix well, mashing some of the beans to help keep the cake together.
  6. Form the mixture into 16 cakes, about 2 inches in diameter and 1/2 inch thick. Dust the cakes lightly with cornmeal.
  7. Preheat nonstick skillet to medium heat. Cook the cakes until heat through, about 4 to 6 minutes.  The Chef says you’re gonna have to work in batches here, so be prepared to move quickly.

Serve these immediately (because these suckers are best hot), preferably with grilled quail and Coffee BBQ Sauce.

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Filed under Appetizers, Beans, Mexican food, Side dishes