Tag Archives: legumes

masa crepes

it has been quite a since my last post!  i have been super busy in the past two weeks (1/2 marathon!  new york city!) and haven’t had time to cook or bake anything blog worthy.  after a shortened work week, i wanted to cook something with more than one step.  i was listening to the splendid table at work and lynn rosetto casper mentioned a recipe for masa crepes  with a chard filling.  i took this idea and combined it with one of my favorite recent food memories: the oxaca tacos from cafe flora in seattle.  cafe flora is a great vegetarian restaurant in madison valley that is very satisfying, even for meat eaters.  i recently picked up their cookbook and it is filled with great recipes, some easy and everyday and some more elaborate.  The oxaca tacos are filled a mashed potato and cheese mixture, served with a black bean stew and swiss chard.  in my rendition, i filled the masa crepes with a mashed potato and sweet potato filling and sauteed spinach and mushrooms.  i also made a quick black bean stew with corn and dried ancho chile but i had to use canned black beans and the liquid was not as rich as it would be if i had cooked dried beans.  the masa crepes are easier to make than regular crepes since they are thicker and easier to flip.  served with some salsa (made by trader joes) it was as satisfying as the original.

masa crepes with spiced potato filling

inspired by cafe flora and the splendid table

not only is this tasty and fancy looking, but it is also cheap!

masa crepes

3 eggs

1/2 cup masa harina (you could also use cornmeal.  blue cornmeal would be great in this)

1/2 cup flour

1/2 tsp salt

3 tbsp oil or melted butter

combine all together in a blender and let it rest while you prep the other ingredients.  while the potatoes are cooking, start making the crepes.  heat a large frying pan until pretty hot and wipe with butter.  pour in crepe batter and immediately tilt the pan around until the batter spreads thinly.  cook until golden brown and flip and brown.  keep making the crepes.  it takes a while for each side to brown so you can easily cook the other components

spiced potato filling with spinach and mushrooms

1 potato (1 used a large red bliss) cubed

1 small sweet potato cubed

1/2 medium onion diced

1 tsp cumin

large pinch cayenne

large spoon of sour cream

sliced mushrooms

very large handful of spinach

1 clove garlic sliced

shredded cheese of your choice (cheddar, smoked mozzarella, queso blanco, etc.)

saute the onion and spices in a bit of olive oil over medium heat until they start to color.  add the potato, season, and cover with a bit of vegetable stock and simmer until soft.  mash the potatoes, season, and stir in the sour cream.  keep warm. saute mushrooms in olive oil until browned.  add the garlic and cook until lightly browned.  add the spinach and cover until wilted.  season and keep warm.

to fill the crepes, set the prettier side down on the frying pan and spread the potato mixture on one side of the crepe and top with a portion of the sauteed spinach and mushrooms and sprinkle with cheese.  heat through and serve with black beans and salsa.

black bean stew

2 cups cooked black beans, preferably from stratch

1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels

2 cloves garlic minced

handful cilantro minced (i did not have this on hand and wished i did)

1/2 tsp chili flakes

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp chili powder

1/2 tsp dried oregano

simmer the beans with their liquid or if using canned add about a cup of water or stock.  add all of the seasonings and simmer until the flavors are blended.  add more liquid to get to a soupier consistency if needed.  add the corn right before serving and heat through.  serve with sour cream or yogurt.

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red lentil dal

in keeping with the cold weather this week, i made my first dal of the year.  red lentils are very quick to cook so this dish comes together in about 30 minutes if you are a fast vegetable chopper.  i am currently reading the very excellent book the kitchen diaries by british food writer nigel slater who chronicles a year of eating and cooking in his kitchen.  the very first recipe featured was a variation of this dal.  instead of the pumpkin slater uses, i combine the red lentils with some sweet potato and carrots which were languishing in the back of my fridge.  slater tops his dal with caramelized onions but i used some leftover avocado and lemon juice.  plain yogurt would also be very good.

ps- this is also a homemade bowl!

sweet potato carrot dal

inspired by the kitchen diaries by nigel slater

1 medium onion diced

2 cloves garlic minced

1 inch or so fresh ginger minced or grated

1 heaping cup split red lentils

1 tsp turmeric (adjust all of these spices to your liking)

1 tsp smoked paprika (i put this on anything that i can)

1 tsp curry power

1 tsp chili powder or 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1 large sweet potato diced into 1/2 inch cubes

2 large carrots diced into 1/2 inch cubes

cilantro (if you have it)

in a heavy pot, sautee the onion with 2 tbsp of canola oil over medium heat until soft.  add the garlic and ginger and cook for about 45 or seconds.  add all of the spices and cook until fragrant.  add the sweet potato and carrot and cook for several more minutes.  add the lentils and cover with about 6 cups of water or a light vegetable broth.  cook until everything is tender.  at this point you can put this in your blender (in batches) to puree or, if you are lazy like me, mash roughly with a potato masher.  the problem with the masher method is that you will still get pieces of ginger.  put the dal back into the pot if you pureed it, and turn up the heat until the dal is thick.  make sure you keep tasting and checking the seasoning.  this seems to take more salt then other soups or stews.  top dal with some caramelized onions, avocado, or plain yogurt.

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