tempeh mushroom bowl, chickpea socca, and sundown carrot and corn salad

IMG_6841It seems to be that time of summer when the garden’s first crops are coming to an end and new ones are starting to show. Each of these three dishes from Sarah B.’s My New Roots reflects this shift in one way or another. For the tempeh mushroom bowl pictured above, we picked our way through bolting spinach to get enough leaves to saute with onion and baby bella mushrooms. The saute is served with millet and tempeh, a most delicious fermented soy product that my parents tried for the first time with this dish.

IMG_6829We officially used the last of our asparagus for this next meal: chickpea socca topped with caramelized onion, asparagus, and plenty of fresh dill. On the other hand, we used the first of our garden’s onions. This also was my first time ever cooking with chickpea flour.

IMG_6819This sundown carrot and corn salad gave us an excuse to use our green onions, which, as you can see, are still quite young. (They seem to be taking their time growing this year.) For the corn, we used some from last year we had frozen in the freezer. This and the salad’s spicy Southwestern-style dressing—lime, chili, cumin, honey, and extra-virgin olive oil—spoke of hot, hot summer days that should be here soon in Wisconsin. 

These dishes represent our 12th, 13th, and 14th dishes from Sarah B.’s My New Roots.

Coconut Curry, Broth with Daikon and Carrot, Quinoa Congee

IMG_6149

I’ve completed three more of Amy Chaplin’s dishes. I’m in love with each of them, and the first is this coconut curry with tamarind tempeh and forbidden black rice (recipe #17). Before making this dish, I’ve never tried tempeh, a fermented soy product. I’ve decided tempeh is the most curious food, but one that is quite addicting. I was able to find the tamarind fruit at a local Asian grocery store that I suspect I’ll be frequenting quite a bit.

IMG_6131

The second dish, pictured below, is an Asian-inspired broth with daikon, carrot, and 100% buckwheat noodles (recipe #18). This was another dish of firsts for me, as this was my first time eating daikon. It reminds me very much of kohlrabi. This also was the first time I used ume plum vinegar. I like this vinegar but it is so very salty! I’ll need to experiment a bit more to get the measurements just right.

IMG_6105

I was very excited to find reasonably-priced dried shiitake mushrooms for making broths, key for both the soup above and the congee below.

IMG_6089

Out of the three dishes in this post, I believe this quinoa congee (recipe #19) will become the most used in my cooking repertoire. As Chaplin explains, congee is an Asian dish that can be made with any grain. Being a complete protein, quinoa is an excellent choice for a simple dinner.

IMG_6160I topped this porridge-like dish as Chaplin does so many of her grains: with a simple drizzle of cold-pressed flax oil and tamari along with scallions, parsley, and avocado.

All in all, three lovely dishes.

mushroom khoresh

Since owning Batmanglij’s Food of Life, I have been fascinated with its khoreshes, or braises that combine different combinations of meats, vegetables, fruits, legumes, and herbs. There is something about a meal simmering slowly on the stove for a few hours that seems to make everything in the world okay—not that I have been able to master a khoresh just yet.

I came pretty close with the yogurt khoresh. See its photo here. And this mushroom and chicken khoresh is pretty good too. This dish is very delicate. Both the saffron and the lime offer a little something unexpected. Plus, it has mushrooms. And I love mushrooms.

Yet last night, this particular khoresh left a little something to be desired. It was almost a bit too delicate. While making it, I ended up adding more than twice the recommended amounts of both turmeric and cumin, in addition to adding a little extra heat.

Over all, this is a very solid chicken dish—just not, well, extraordinary.

I have completed 25 of Batmanglij’s 268 recipes. Percentage complete: 9.33%