Ok, it’s windy, chilly, nasty, threatening snow. Almost what you see in all the mountain movies about the Himalayas. Soo, hmm, Himalayas, gurka’s, Dal and rice…. But a soup, with Asian chicken stock, one can forgo the chicken stock and use vegetable stock for a vegetarian twist. But as always, we’ll look at some dried red peppers, or maybe serve with a hot pepper / vinegar finishing sauce on the side…
Dahl bhat is a traditional South / Central Asian and staple dish which is essentially rice (bhat) and lentil soup (dal). This is a very common food in South Asian countries specially Nepal. In general eaten twice a day with another (usually spicy, maybe hot /sour) dish called tarkari which can be either vegetarian or non-vegetarian..
The recipes vary by locality, ethnic group, family, as well as the season. Dal generally contains lentils (different types are used according to taste), tomatoes, onion, chili and ginger along with herbs and spices such as coriander, garam-masala and turmeric.
Slow Cooker Black Beans
I do not do cold or wet very well and for the last several days of misery, I’ve been craving some hot, hearty, black bean soup. I love thick black bean soup, just about a stew, something that will stick to you and shield you from the icy talons of wind.
Soups like this are mostly improvisations. The basic ingredients are the black beans, the smoked ham, the aromatics, and the spices. From there one can add or remove ingredients to meet your tastes or culinary requirements. (The ham / pork component can be replaced with dark meat chicken and liquid smoke, or the meat component can be dropped entirely and replaced with a heavy mirepoix or other aromatics.
I know I’ve done a few bean posts over the last month, but they are easy to cook, fairly healthy, and very cost effective, one slow cooker of beans will feed the lair for several days, as opposed to a slow cooker of stew that will be consumed in less than a day.
16 Bean Soup
Today is another working day in the lab. Correcting all the mistakes I made yesterday, and making fresh ones for tomorrow. So food will need to the hearty, hot, and plentiful. I’m thinking beans, but maybe not my usual beans, a mix say 16 beans. Soaked overnight, and slow cooked with bacon, andui sausage, and the trinity of onion, celery and green pepper.
This is a good, simple, healthy meal for a winters day. It’s delicious and full of protein and fiber and low on cholesterol…you can’t loose. And it’s cheap, a good thing considering the current economy.
This can be made vegetarian, in fact vegan, but I really will need real meat protein, so I’ll also go with chicken stock as a liquid.
Soup is a food that is made by combining ingredients such as meat and vegetables with stock, juice, water or another liquid. Hot soups are additionally characterized by boiling solid ingredients in liquids in a pot until the flavors are extracted, forming a broth. Traditionally, soups are classified into two main groups: clear soups and thick soups. The established French classifications of clear soups are bouillon and consommé. Thick soups are classified depending upon the type of thickening agent used: purées are vegetable soups thickened with starch; bisques are made from puréed shellfish or vegetables thickened with cream; cream soups may be thickened with béchamel sauce; and veloutés are thickened with eggs, butter and cream. Other ingredients commonly used to thicken soups and broths include rice, flour and grains.
Cacciatore alla Pollo
I’ve not posted for the week as I have been eyebrow deep in projects, the VMWare lab, and dealing with other crises. Winter storm Q has made things just nasty, cool, wet, windy, not the type of weather I want to go out into, besides I have lot to do. This sounds like Cacciatore…
Cacciatore means “hunter” in Italian. In cuisine, “alla cacciatora” refers to a meal prepared “hunter-style” with tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, herbs, often bell pepper, and sometimes wine. Usually made with braised chicken (pollo alla cacciatora) or rabbit, In southern Italy, cacciatore often includes red wine while northern Italian chefs might use white wine.
A basic cacciatore begins with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil heated in a large frying pan. Chicken parts, dusted with salt and pepper, are seared in the oil for three to four minutes on each side. The chicken is removed from the pan, and most of the fat poured off. The remaining fat is used to fry the onions, mushrooms, peppers or other vegetables for several minutes. A small can of peeled tomatoes (drained of liquid and coarsely chopped) is added to the pan along with some oregano and a half cup of dry red wine. The seared chicken parts are returned to the pan which is then covered. The dish is done after about an hour at a very low simmer.
Chinese New year – Hot and Sour Soup
So Blizzard Nemo is gone, but left it’s droppings everywhere. It’s cold enough to want a coat and warm enough to sweat while shoveling. Sniffles are starting so it’s time for chicken soup, but not just “chicken soup”. “CHICKEN SOUP”, with zing, taste and a bite you back attitude…. And just in time for Chinese New Year …
An Asian classic and a raging favorite around the wolf’s lair. Specially made for cold weather, the power of a good chicken stock, and the bite of fresh ginger, and a touch of chili make a fearsome opponent for the achy-bakey feeling and dripping noses. The prefect starter for an Asian styled dinner, or with the addition of cooked chicken, and fried wonton skin strips can be the whole meal.
Ragù Alla Bolognese
Snow, cold, wind, Time for REAL food. But food that can be extended and reheated. I’m thinking a pasta here, with a rich and thick Ragù Alla Bolognese. Hearty, meaty sauce, that can be made in a large batch and served over quickly cooked pasta for good hot meals that are quick.
Add some garlic bread and a salad, and call it “Dinner. Done!”
If all else fails I can thin it down with chicken stock, add a few more tomatoes and have a very hearty tomato soup.
Pasta is generally served with some type of sauce; the sauce and the type of pasta are usually matched based on consistency and ease of eating. Northern Italy has fewer traditionally tomato-based pasta sauces (though tomatoes are still used in recipes) including pesto and ragù alla bolognese. In Central Italy, there are sauces such as tomato sauce, amatriciana, arrabiata and the egg based carbonara.
Tomato sauces are also present in Southern Italian cuisine, where they originated. In Southern Italy more complex variations include pasta paired with fresh vegetables, olives, capers or seafood. A lighter, more quickly prepared version of a tomato dish dish is called pomodoro. Varieties include puttanesca, pasta alla norma (tomatoes, eggplant and fresh or baked cheese), pasta con le sarde (fresh sardines, pine nuts, fennel and olive oil), spaghetti aglio, olio e peperoncino (literally with garlic, olive oil and hot chili peppers).
Fettuccine alfredo with cream, cheese and butter, and spaghetti with tomato sauce (with or without meat) are popular Italian-style dishes in the United States.