Monday, May 25, 2009

Dinner Casserole similar to Breakfast Casserole

When I make my Breakfast Quiche Casserole, I sometimes use spinach for the first layer to make a lower carb. version. Tonight I used onion tops and they are just wonderful.

Melt 4 T butter in large glass casserole dish in the oven set to 350 degrees.

Chop green onion tops. I had lots from the onions I bought last week at the farmer's market. I sometimes throw these away, but no longer.

Pull out the casserole with the melted butter and toss the green tops in butter and put back in the oven for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, saute:

1 lb. sausage-pasture raised or ground pork with
1 t. sea salt and
1 t. pepper for seasoning, sauteed gently and set aside.

Mix equal parts eggs and milk, and this time I used some goat broth for the liquid.

3 C. eggs (about 1 dozen), whisk in bowl.
3 C. Milk or broth or both, add to eggs.
1 t. sea salt-unrefined
1/2 t. pepper

4 C. grated cheese. I use a grass-fed Colby cheese and I don't mind that this cheese is NOT raw because I'm going to cook it anyway.

Pull out the hot sizzling onions and top with the sausage, cheese, and milk/broth mixture.

Return to oven for 30 minutes.

The mixture of milk and broth was interesting. There was clear broth that separated from the milk/egg mixture but in a really nice way. It was very juicy which I really liked.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Hoppin John

A favorite meal, especially for work lunches (thermos food) is Hoppin John. I make my own version which uses foods I always have on hand.

Bacon, chopped and sauteed with
Onion, chopped
Celery, chopped
Carrots, cubed

Cooked black eyed peas using the overnight soaking method, then drained.
2 Bay leaves
Garlic, plenty of cloves
Bone Broth that I usually have cooking on the stove. It doesn't seem to matter what kind.
Thyme, dried
Hot pepper flakes.
Sea Salt, unrefined.

1 C. brown rice cooked with
2 C. water
1 t. salt
2 T butter

I saute the first ingredients in the bacon and fat, then add everything else, adding the bone broth to just cover the pea mixture. I simmer this while I cook rice to go with it. I add the two together to store for lunches. I like to cook brown rice on a very low heat and do it an hour. It has such a nice nutty flavor. I usually try to soak the rice overnight too which neutralizes the phytates, but rice isn't so high that this step gets skipped in my house sometimes.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Everyday Cassoulet-Fantastic

I love cassoulet. After I read Julia Child's recipe, I was delighted to learn all about it. Though inspirational, I've never made her recipe because it's so involved. I tasted two authentic cassoulets in France and both were hearty, plain, and delicious. I developed an everyday version that uses simple ingredients.

Soak 2 lb.s Great Northern beans in warm water with whey or lemon juice. Leave overnight. I like to rinse them once during this time, like early in the morning before I cook them. I think it makes them digest easier.

Boil a kettle of water to precipitate as much calcium from hard water as is possible. Pour boiling water over the drained beans and simmer for about 20 minutes. Drain again and pour more pre-boiled water over the beans and simmer for 2 to 3 hours until tender.

Prepare the chicken by cutting into pieces and then make stock out of all the bones. You will need this to pour over the bean-meat mixture.

Roast chicken pieces in the largest Le Creuset casserole you have. I added Italian sausages (no nitrate) and a piece of fatty bacon (no nitrate) too. Drain the beans when cooked and pour over the meats with 2 bay leaves. Add a can of diced tomatoes and about 2 T. tomato paste. A tiny amount of paste is best. I keep extra tomato paste in globs in the freezer. Add un-refined sea salt. Pour the chicken broth over the mixture until you can see the liquid. Add more water to the bones and keep them cooking for even more broth for future cooking.

Bake, covered, at 350 degrees for about 1 hour.

Remove the lid and bake 20 minutes longer. I let this cool down in the oven after I turn it off. The skin that forms makes the broth delicious.

Let this casserole cool down a bit before serving. This is a dish where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It's not authentic cassoulet but what a fabulous flavor it has.

Friday, May 8, 2009

French School Lunch

Check out this link to find out what the city of Lyon is scheduling for their children's school lunches.

Lentil Salad with Dry Land Cress

I cooked some lentils in my crock-pot after soaking them overnight to remove the phytates. I drained them well and added:

Olive Oil
Lemon-juice of one
Sea Salt
Spring Onions
Lacto-fermented carrots, chopped

As a side, I cooked some dry land cress like this:

Saute 2 strips of nitrate-free bacon
Toss into pan, 2 heads of chopped dry-land cress (I got this at the farmer's market)
Saute the cress until limp and slightly cooked.

I actually put both of these together on top of a fresh bib lettuce leaf.

This is a delicious cold or slightly warm salad. For lunch the next day I took more lentils and seasoned with balsamic vinegar, onions, salt, pepper, and olives and topped with slices of avocado coated in vinegar.

It's fast food if you have the lentils already cooked and in the fridge unseasoned. This way you can get them out to make a salad, stew, or soup.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Fried Rice

I found a way to make fried rice that I love.

I make it in my large iron skillet starting with some good lard, sausage fat, or bacon and the fat.

I use brown rice that has been soaked and cooked and can be leftover.

Fry bacon pieces and leave that fat in the skillet. While that is frying, prepare vegetables and other ingredients in separate small containers.

Sesame seeds
Onions sliced or diced
Garlic cloves. I crush these on top of another vegetable type ingredient.
Almonds, crispy a la Nourishing Traditions, coarsely chopped.
Cucumbers diced.
Red peppers diced.
Spinach leaves chopped a bit.
Tomatoes quartered or diced.
Anything else you want. Whatever I get at the farmer's market goes into this.

Add the sesame seeds to the bacon and fat and fry until a bit toasty.
Add the rice and fry at a medium heat, stirring and scraping every few minutes with a metal, flat spatula. When the rice is hot and frying, add the spinach and toss every so often for 2 to 3 minutes.

Toss in everything else but the cucumbers and tomatoes and let those ingredients get warm.
Put onto serving platter and add one egg per person to the empty skillet, using more fat in necessary.

Fry eggs very lightly and turn over, adding this to the top of the rice mixture.
Sprinkle on naturally brewed Tamari sauce and garnish with cucumbers and tomatoes.

This meal is very simple to construct and has everything you could possibly want all in one dish. I like the fact that the garlic and onions are almost raw but the spinach is slightly cooked which makes it more nutritious. I also garnish with lacto-fermented carrots since I keep those on hand. The skillet does not need to be washed afterwards and the little bowls of prepared vegetables are easy to wash. This dish is delicious even as it cools down and the egg with a very soft-to-liquid yolk is the very best!