It's Not Awful, It's Falafel!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

It's a taco, from Morocco!

In our quest to find new and tasty vegetarian dishes, we decided to make falafel. Summer had it last week at her Uncle's house, and really liked it.

My take? I probably won't make it again, but I would love to try it in a restaurant that specializes in Middle Eastern food. In short, it tastes like a curry hush puppy!

Falafel is traditionally made with garbanzo or fava beans. We cheated and used the boxed mix:

Add some water to the mix and let set a few minutes.

Then roll into balls and/or patties. We did both.

Make sure you have your helper for this!

Then you fry them in 1/2 inch of oil for a couple of minutes until crispy and browned.

Traditionally, these are served in a pita with Tahini sauce (a sesame "paste"), but we aren't big fans of Tahini, so we decided to mix genres and use Taziki sauce, which is a Greek sauce.

First, peel and seed a cucumber, then salt it and let it sit to pull the water out of the cucumber. In your food processor, throw in the cucumber, chopped up, some lemon juice, Greek yogurt (my new favorite ingredient), salt and pepper, and spices as desired.

Blend until well pureed.

Then, chop of some veggies of choice....

And assemble everything in a pita. We used these wraps instead. I prefer Anan bread (a pocketless pita) but those are hard to find around these parts.


Grilled Corn, Avocado and Tomato Salad with Honey Lime Dressing

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

I knew I wanted to make a corn salad for the 4th of July BBQ, I just didn't know which one. When I came across this recipe on Foodgawker, I knew this was the one. The combination of ingredients, along with the Honey Lime Dressing just grabbed my attention. This recipe is a keeper!

If making ahead of time, wait until just before serving to add the avocado.



Juice of 2 limes
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon salt
2 cloves crushed garlic
1/2 teaspooon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper


2 pints grape tomatoes, cut in half
2 avocados, roughly chopped
6 ears fresh, sweet corn
4 tablespoons cilantro, chopped


Grill corn over medium heat for 10-15 minutes. I didn't feel like turning on the BBQ at 8:00 am, so I roasted my corn in a 450 degree oven for 15 minutes, turning halfway through.

Let the corn cool, then cut the corn off the cob and scrape the cob with the back of your knife to get the juices.

Add all the ingredients for the dressing in a bowl and whisk to combine. Get your helper to do this.

Add the tomatoes, avocado, cilantro and grilled corn. Mix well so that everything is coated with the marinade, but be careful not the mash the avocadoes.

Refrigerate for an hour and serve.

There was another corn salad at the potluck, prepared by the host. Her husband came to me after dinner and said mine was better. But then you already knew that.

Bon Appetite!


BLT Pasta Salad

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

NOTE: If there was any doubt, I am a moron. On the next two posts, there are no pictures of the completed salads. I had to wait until the last minute to finish them before the party, and completely forgot to take pictures. I am a work in progress!

On to the recipe!

Two of my favorite summer meals are cold salads and a BLT sandwich. So I knew when I found this recipe I had to try it. It goes together in minutes, and was a hit at our 4th of July BBQ.


1 (7-8 oz) package of rotini pasta noodles (cooked and drained)
8 slices bacon, cooked until crispy and crumbled
1 cup mayonnaise
Juice of one lemon
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons chicken flavored instant bouillon (2 cubes, crushed)
2 large or 4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup green onions, sliced
4 cups lettuce, thinly sliced


In a small bowl, combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, chicken bouillon and sugar. Mix well until smooth.

In a serving bowl, add noodles, bacon, tomato, and green onions, toss with dressing. Stir in lettuce right before serving.

This was delicious. And super fast to prepare. It's a keeper! Try it for your next potluck, I promise you won't be disappointed.

Bon Appetite!


Pasta Salad with Prosciutto, Tomatoes and Basil

Monday, July 6, 2009

To celebrate the 4th of July, we joined some friends and family for a BBQ. Again, I was lacking inspiration for a dish to bring. So I called upon Old Faithful... Foodgawker. As usually happens when I go on Foodgawker, I ended up with about 5 different salad recipes printed. And I made 3 of them for the BBQ. Me, excessive? Never.

Worth noting...this is the first time I have ever cooked with prosciutto.


1 pound of pasta - any short pasta will do
2 pints of grape tomatoes, cut in half
1/3 cup of basil, chiffonade
2-3 cloves of garlic, finely minced
10 slice of prosciiutto, cut into 1/2" strips
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste


As pasta is cooking, prepare the rest of the ingredients, which can be combined together right away. When the pasta is al denta, drain, rinse with cold water and redrain. Combine everything. Season to taste.

Final product: A pretty salad, if not terribly exciting.



Devil Horns

Saturday, July 4, 2009

In my last post, I mentioned that we were eating better because of the vegetarian in the house.

Scratch that.

These Devil Horns are not good for you. They have no redeeming nutritional qualities. They are loaded with fat and sugar. In fact, you should just stop reading here. Whatever you do, do NOT make these!

Still reading, huh? Okay, you were warned.
These delicious little treats were discovered at my office potluck this week. And I love them, not only because they are more addictive then crack, but because they only have 3 ingredients. Remember, I'm all about cheap and easy.
You will need a couple of bags of Bugles, some Almond Bark in Vanilla, and some sliced almonds.

Melt the almond bark in a glass bowl in the microwave. Takes a couple of minutes, stir until completely smooth.

Pour your Bugles in a bowl... I used about a bag and a half.

Add some sliced almonds. How many is really up to you. I used a 2 oz bag of almonds for a bag and a half of Bugles.

Pour the melted bark over the Bugles/Almond mixture.

Make sure you mix WELL. The Bugles should be totally covered.

Spread the mixture out on was paper to cool. Don't worry about separating completely, you want some clumps of mixture.

Let cool at room temperature for about 15 minutes, and place in a serving bowl or Tupperware.

Gratuitous shot of Devil Horns in the bowl Summer painted.

These will store, covered, for about a week. Trust me, they won't last that long.



Farmers Market

Finally, we have a small farmers market in town. This was the second week, and I'm there by 7:00 am each Saturday. It's too dang hot to go later. It was already 90 degrees at 7:00 this morning.

I must say...we are definitely eating better now that we have a vegetarian in the house that actually eats vegetables.

I'm busy cooking today for the 4th of July BBQ tonight. Lots of recipes posted in the next few days. Hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July!

The Box Lunch Copyright © 2009 Designed by Ipietoon Blogger Template for Bie Blogger Template Vector by DaPino