Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Thai curry chicken burgers with herb salad

This is like eating a full Thai curry packed into a neat little burger patty. I mixed ground chicken with red curry paste, "peanut" butter (actually sunflower seed butter), and other seasonings found in curry sauce. I also added some veggies to for flavor, color, and volume. On the side is an herb salad with a base of mint, cilantro, and Thai basil dressed with fish sauce and lime. I used this recipe, though next time I will use 2 Tbs fish sauce instead of fish + soy in the dressing.

You could also make this as sliders for an appetizer. Just pan-fry mini patties and serve them in lettuce cups with a sprinkling of the herb salad on top.

I used ground chicken, but I think ground pork would be great as well if you're not a poultry fan.

Serves 4

  • 1 lb ground chicken (or ground pork)
  • 1 small zucchini, grated
  • 1 small carrot, grated
  • 1 egg white (or use a whole egg if you'd prefer, it's just to hold everything together)
  • 1 Tbs red curry paste
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup nut butter (peanut butter is probably the tastiest but if you avoid legumes, sunflower seed, cashew, or macadamia would all work. Use 1/4 cup if you're watching calories, 1/2 cup would be tastier though)
  • 1/2 tsp chili-garlic paste or Sriracha sauce
  • 1/2 Tbs fresh ginger, grated OR 1/2 tsp high-quality ground ginger
  • 2 scallions, minced
  • 1/2 Tbs fish sauce
  • 1 Tbs minced cilantro
  • 1 Tbs lime juice 
  1. Combine all ingredients thoroughly in a large bowl.
  2. Using damp hands, form the meat mixture into four uniform patties.
  3. In a pan on the stove top, sear each side over medium-high heat until browned (extra-virgin coconut oil is ideal here for greasing the pan, but any fat will work). Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook until opaque throughout.
  4. Serve with Thai herb salad on the side

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Single-serving microwave brownie

Why you will love this recipe: 1) Makes a single serving in case you're the type to eat a whole pan of brownies when you have them around *sheepishly raises hand* 2) Takes about a minute to prep and 30 seconds to cook 3) Is gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, and sugar-free 4) MAKES A BROWNIE.

These are based on almond butter; I got the idea from this recipe at Elana's Pantry. It gives them a nice moist fudgy texture. You can certainly experiment with the recipe and try adding walnuts, chocolate chips, cacao nibs, dried cherries, instant coffee, or whatever else you like.

Serves 1

  • 1 Tbs creamy almond butter
  • 1 Tbs liquid egg white (or use a tablespoon of beaten egg, I just think liquid egg white is more convenient for this)
  • 1 tsp dutch-processed unsweetened cocoa powder such as Hershey's Special Dark
  • 1/8 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 packets sweetener such as Sweetleaf stevia OR 1 Tbs honey
  • Pinch baking soda (about 1/16 tsp; you can try omitting this if you like a denser brownie.)
  • Pinch salt (can omit if your almond butter is salty)
  1. In a ramekin, small mug, or similar microwave-safe cup, combine all the ingredients. Stir with a fork to thoroughly combine, ensuring that there are no lumps.
  2. Microwave on high for about 30 seconds. Note: You can reduce the time for a "molten" brownie. You may have to experiment a bit with cooking times since all microwaves are different. If you're unsure you can try nuking it at 10 second intervals, checking it each time.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Roasted red cabbage and green beans

This sounds like a strange combination, but since developing this recipe I find myself making it over and over again. I had a hard time getting a good photo (and I'm still not particularly happy with this one) because, well, roasted veggies are not as photogenic as their lightly-steamed and brightly-colored counterpart. But I love roasted veggies, I love the flavor and the browning and caramelization that roasting adds, and I'm always looking for different veggie combinations to do. So...just trust me on this one. Make it.

Serves 4-6 as a side dish

  • About half a pound of red cabbage, shredded or cut into chunks
  • 1 lb green beans, washed and ends snapped
  • 1 Tbs olive oil (or other fat of choice)
  • 2 Tbs sherry vinegar (can substitute balsamic vinegar)
  • 2 Tbs grated parmesan cheese (can omit if you are dairy-free)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 450 F.
  2. Toss the cabbage and green beans with the oil and vinegar.
  3. Arrange the veggies in a single layer on a foil-lined cookie sheet. You may want to use two cookie sheets; if you crowd the veggies too much they will steam and not get brown.
  4. Roast for about 30 minutes, stirring them halfway through. You can cook them longer if you'd like them to get more brown.
  5. Immediately toss with the parmesan cheese and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve.

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