Asian Noodles (recipe)

Ingredients:

  • Whole packet of whole-wheat spaghetti (cooked)
  • Chopped green onions
  • Sesame seeds
  • Black seeds (do not put too much or it will be bitter)
  • Brown sugar (1 tblsp)
  • TJ Island Soyaki Sauce
  • Chili garlic sauce (depending how hot you want it)
  • Shredded ginger (be generous here)
  • 1 squeezed orange 
  • Chopped cilantro
  • Smashed! garlic (4-5 cloves)
  • few spoons of oil
  • Sliced top sirloin in slivers (make sure to slice against the grain)

Yes I know it’s weird to use spaghetti for an Asian dish but it tastes really great and it doesn’t feel so unusual.  The sesame seeds adds great texture and crunch.

I know some of you may not have Trader Joe’s so when I get the sauce, I’ll list the ingredients so you can still make this dish.  I apologize: I ran out as I was making the noodles and forgot to save the bottle!

  1. You can marinate the sliced meat overnight or for a few hours or just 10 minutes before cooking (like I actually did, ha) but I am sure it would have a lot more flavor if I did.  So add the TJ Soyaki Sauce until it coats all the meat pieces, add the ginger (make sure to add a lot, it makes is taste so much better) and the smashed! garlic.
  2. Heat the pan with oil and when it becomes hot enough throw in the meat and cook them until they are done.
  3. So sorry to not list the rest of the ingredients here (lazy cook and writer, sorry!) and add those in with the meat and mix well (except the noodles, oops, spaghetti).  Maybe have this on for about 10 minutes.
  4.  Then mix the spaghetti and make sure everything is coated and covered well.  Turn off heat.
  5. Of course you can adjust the flavorings to your liking (add/less ginger, more sauce, more/less orange juice…you get it.)
  6. Serve and garnish with black and white sesame seeds.

Enjoy!  Black seeds are blessed

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Baba Ghanoush (eggplant dip recipe)

So, I gave you lots of time to think what it may be…it’s baba ghanoush!

Ingredients:

2 large eggplants (cooked on grill or oven until soft and mashable)

3-4 cloves of garlic, smashed! (depending on how garlicky you want it)

extra virgin olive oil

salt

tahini

chopped parsley (fresh preferably but you can use dried)

1-2 cups of yogurt

freshly squeezed lemon juice

  1. Take the cooked eggplants and scoop out the flesh and try to not get as many seeds as possible.  Squeeze it between those clean hands of yours and get as much liquid as you can.
  2. Put the eggplant flesh in a food processor and spin that machine around until it’s smooth; if you don’t have a food processor, you can just use a good ol’ fork but it won’t be as smooth.
  3. Parsley can be put in the machine as well; you want it chopped finely.
  4. Pour in the bowl and mix in yogurt, tahini, lemon juice, smashed! ( I envision a big sledge-hammer doing this every time I write that word!) garlic and salt.
  5. Make sure that it doesn’t taste bitter and bland; you know you have made it right when you taste all the flavors but nothing overwhelms the other ingredients.
  6. Pour in a nice dish and drizzle olive oil.  Garnish with lemon slices and parsley.  Eat with warm pita bread.  Or your hands.  Just kidding.

Pinto Bean Stew (recipe)

Ingredients:

(2) 15 oz. cans (rinsed) pinto beans (or dried beans that are cooked)

4-5 diced tomatoes

1 chopped onion

1 squeezed lemon

3-4 smashed! garlic cloves

Cumin

Parsley (fresh or dried)

Salt

Oil

  1. Sauté onions in oil until transparent.
  2. Add tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Add beans and cook for another 3 minutes.
  4. Add garlic, lemon juice, cumin, parsley, and salt-cook until everything is soft.
  5. Adjust the flavorings to your liking (add more lemon, cumin, or oil if you prefer)
  6. That’s it!  Now eat it!

It’s easy, healthy, and full of flavor.

Good protein from the beans, lycopene from the cooked tomotoes, and cumin is a spice that is known to be good for the stomach (if I or my daughters’ bellies hurt, my husband makes potatoes and adds cumin to it and makes us eat it like medicine!).

Maybe I’ll share that recipe another time…

Share and enjoy!

Fattoush recipe

image by Mariam Al-Kalby

Chop all these ingredients:

1 Romaine lettuce

1 Tomato

1 Persian cucumber (or English one peeled)

½ red onion or green onion 3 pieces (stems, stalks? I think you know what I mean)

3 radishes (optional)

 

dried or fresh parsley

dried or fresh mint

sumac (buy it in a Middle Eastern store)

squeezed lemon

smashed! garlic (4 cloves)

salt

extra virgin olive oil

toasted wheat pita bread (or white if you prefer) broken into bite size pieces

 

In all honesty, when I make this fattoush, I just use whatever I have at home.

If I didn’t have cucumbers then there was not going to be any cucumbers in that fattoush that day.  If I didn’t have any radishes, well, then, no radishes in that fattoush.

But of course it’s nicer to have them all, if possible.

Usually fattoush calls for fried pita bread but since we care a little bit about our health here, I have opted to choose wheat and un-fried pita bread.

Also, I apologize when it comes to measurements, with the exception for baking I really just measure with my eyes.

I know, I know, if you really need measurements, let me know and I will be sure to help you.

Ok, back to the salad that I am sure you’re dying to chop up:

So basically chop all the veggies throw’em in a bowl, sprinkle the spices, add the lemon juice, garlic, e.v.o.o., and pita bites.

Mix really well until everything is coated and glistening with the oil and spices.

Take a fork and dig into the salad, you know to make sure it tastes right.

To know that you were successful, it should have a lemony fresh flavor, a bite of garlic, and a whole lot of goodness sopped up in the bread from all the juices.

Enjoy!