Saturday, 28 February 2015

Eyes Wide Open

As it started out, I had high hopes for this Israeli film. Set in the strict Orthodox community, I thought this would be a ground-breaking movie that would show what it was like to be gay and Orthodox.

And as it continued, I hoped that Aaron, the protagonist, would find the strength to stand up for Ezri, his beloved, and to ensure that they could be together.

Unfortunately, as is typical for LGBTQ books and films, this didn’t happen. I won’t spoil it for you, but I was so disappointed by the film. I felt the director chickened out and didn’t go deep enough into the subject.

Monday, 23 February 2015

Tomato Artichoke Soup

I was working from home one day and wanted a fast, healthy lunch. This is what I came up with.

olive oil
½ vegetable stock cube
1 tin tomatoes
½ tin artichoke hearts (bottoms would probably do well too)
1 cup rice milk
pine nuts
pumpkin seed oil

1. Heat the oil and add the stock cube, breaking it up.
2. Add the tomatoes and artichokes (I used about half the tin and saved the other half for pizza, but feel free to use more or less). Cook for 5-10 min.
3. Add the milk and blend with a hand mixer.
4. Warm a few more minutes, then serve topped with pine nuts and a drizzle of pumpkin seed oil.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Fine Pizza Dough

I read that you could make pizza dough from “00” flour for a finer texture, so I thought I’d try that.

350 g “00” flour
1 tsp sea salt
2 tsp fast-action dried yeast
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp olive oil
200 ml lukewarm water (about 1 cup)

1. Mix all the ingredients together well.
2. Place in a warm spot to rise for about an hour.
3. Knead on an oiled surface and shape into a pizza. Let rise again.
4. Then top and bake as desired.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Padron Peppers

On trips to Spain and Portugal, I’ve gone wild for padron peppers, sometimes eating them once or twice a day!

My amazing wife began growing the peppers in our garden, so I can make them at home. Some weeks I had them several nights in a row. Delicious!

padron peppers (10-20, depending on how many you want to eat)
olive oil
sea salt

1. Wash and dry the peppers.
2. Heat the oil up until fairly warm, then fry the peppers, so they blister and turn brown in spots.
3. Sprinkle with salt.
4. Eat!

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Cabbage, Apple, and Celery Stir-Fry

This is really good with the Persian rice I posted last, or with noodles.

1 onion
2-4 stalks of celery
1 pointed cabbage or ½ regular cabbage
water (in ¼ cup increments or as needed)
2 apples
1 tsp sugar
lemon juice (2-5 tbsp, depending on taste)
mint (1 tbsp)
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste

1. Peel and dice the onion and fry lightly in some oil.
2. Chop the celery and cabbage and add to the pan. Cook for a few minutes, then add some water and cover. Leave over medium heat for 8-10 minutes.
3. Chop the apples and add to the pan, along with the other ingredients. Cook another 10 minutes, adding more water if needed.
4. Season with more lemon juice, mint, salt, and pepper.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Persian Rice

Often, when I’ve had dinner at a Persian restaurant or at a Persian person’s home, I’ve admired the rice. It is usually really fluffy, with one crispy layer. I wanted to know how to do it.

So now, after reading Veggiestan, I’ve learned. M didn’t like the crispy layer (more for me!) but if you forgo the oil and just follow the rest of the instructions, you’ll get a lovely pile of fluffy rice.

You can also put something in between the oil and rice, such as potatoes.

rice (I usually go for about 50 g per person)

1. Rinse the rice until the water runs clear.
2. Boil the water and then cook the rice in it for 6-8 minutes.
3. Drain the rice (not in a colander, unless you have one with tiny holes).
4. Pour the oil in the bottom of the pan and warm. Add a couple of tablespoons of water.
5. Layer the rice in carefully.
6. Make several big holes through the rice to the bottom of the pan.
7. Wrap the lid of the pan in a clean cloth, then put the lid on.
8. Steam the rice for 25-35 minutes, until cooked and fluffy.