Friday, December 30, 2016

Orzo, Cauliflower Salad with sprouted Moong beans. [Orzo cooked with sauteed onions, garlic and Turmeric.]

I am sharing one more salad recipe that was  prepared for lunch box,   Orzo-Cauliflower  salad with sprouted moong beans. I cooked orzo after long time. I have previous blogged  this mint infused orzo salad recipe. This time I cooked orzo in the flavor base of sauteed onions, garlic and  turmeric powder. Cooked orzo was very flavorful, tasty to eat by itself. I added cauliflower, overnight sprouted Moong beans,Cranberries. Salad was seasoned with  sesame oil, rice vinegar, little agave nectar, chopped green chilies,  and sesame seeds. Final garnish was done with lots of fresh  flat leaf parsley. This spontaneously cooked nutritious and tasty salad combination  was worth repeating so  I quickly took two images  to share here.

Ingredients for Orzo-Gobi Salad : (serves two)
  • 3/4 Cup - Orzo (Rinse in water before adding to onion base.)
  • 200 gm - Cauliflower piece - broken into 1/2 - inch florets.
  • 1 Cup - sprouted Moong Beans
  • 1 small size onion - lengthwise sliced into 2  inch long pieces (1 Cup yield.)
  • Turmeric powder - heaping 1/4 tsp.
  • 4 garlic cloves - sliced lengthwise
  • 1 Tb.spoon - Rice bran oil to saute onions, use any oil of your preference.
  • 1 Tb.spoon - Sesame oil or any other oil of your choice. (I used separated oil from  Iraqi Tahini paste.)
  • 1 tiny green chili - finely chopped, chop more for extra heat.
  • 1 Tb.spoon - lightly toasted sesame seeds
  • 5 Tb.spoon - dried cranberries rinsed in water and drained.
  • 1 T.spoon - rice vinegar
  • 1 T.spoon - Agave nectar or Honey
  • 1.5 Cups - chopped flat leaf parsley
Cooking Orzo
Heat 1 tbsp rice bran oil or any other cooking oil in a minimum 2 quart pot. Add sliced onions, sliced garlic cloves, chopped green chili, saute for 6-7 minutes over medium heat, stirring often.  Add 3/4 cup rinsed orzo,1/4 heaping tsp turmeric powder  to the sauteed onions. Add 1.5 cups of water, little less than 1/2 tsp fine sea salt, continue to cook over medium high heat until water is almost absorbed by orzo, about 7-8 minutes. Stir often to avoid sticking at  the bottom. Reduce heat to medium add around 3/4 cup more water, cauliflower florets, continue to cook for another 4-5 minutes over medium heat. Put off the heat and drain orzo pasta and cauliflower, save the liquid to use in other recipes. (I use drained liquid to make chapati dough.) Pour half cup more water over pasta to drain off excess starch.
Final Salad assembly
Transfer  drained orzo and cauliflower into a medium size bowl. Drizzle 1 tbsp sesame oil or any other salad friendly oil of your choice, toss and gently stir to coat pasta with oil. I used separated oil from  Iraqi Tahini paste.
Next add 1 cup sprouted moong**, 5 tbsp rinsed cranberries, 1 tbsp lightly toasted sesame seeds, 1.5 cup chopped parsley, 1 tsp agave nectar or honey, 1 tsp rice vinegar or any vinegar of your choice. Mix and toss to combine, check taste to adjust sweet-sour seasoning. Sprinkle little salt to taste. If you need more heat, add small finely chopped green chili. Lastly you may add your choice of cheese, little creamy salad dressing before serving.I packed this salad in lunch box without adding cheese or salad dressing.

Note : **If you don't prefer to add raw sprouted beans, add to orzo pot  along with cauliflower to  get little tender.

Salad packed for lunch.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Broccoli, Green beans and Kale saute for Sunday lunch.[ Rice and Roti free lunch.]

Today's lunch was rice and roti free. I had left over king mackerel fish curry. I cooked simple saute with broccoli, green beans and Kale. Also made raita with Kumato Tomato. This is first time I tasted Kumato which I got last week from Aldi's store. King mackerel fish curry was made with onion+Tomatillo base, use of Tomatillo makes curry sour and brings nice thick and smooth gravy texture due to its pectin content. Lunch combination was very satisfying, I didn't miss rice or roti. I am briefly explaining saute and Raita recipes which are cooked in a very simple manner.

How to prepare Broccoli, Green beans and Kale Saute
Prepping the Veggies: Slice 10-12 green beans into 1-inch long diagonal shape, take  4-5 broccoli florets, slice each floret  lengthwise into 3  pieces, i have used broccoli florets with  almost 2 inch long stems. Put sliced broccoli florets and green beans in the microwave safe bowl filled with water, cook  for 4-5 minutes, drain the water and keep aside. Slice 3-4 garlic cloves lengthwise, finely chop one green chili. Separate Kale greens from stem, thinly slice stem and chop the leaf.
Cooking saute: Heat 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil in a small saute pan. Add  sliced garlic and green chili, saute for one minute. Add sliced kale stem, continue to saute for another one minute. Sprinkle a pinch of asafoetida (hing) and turmeric powder, stir for 25 seconds, Now add chopped kale leaf, saute for  about 3 minutes by adding 2 tbsp water, once water evaporates, add pre-boiled and drained broccoli and beans. Stir to mix all well, sprinkle one generous pinch of salt. Increase heat to medium high, saute for one minute then put off the gas. Drizzle half teaspoon extra virgin olive oil before serving. (serves one generous portion.)

Kumato Tomato raita in Yogurt.
Cut one  Kumato tomato into 4 pieces, remove seeds, cut into 1 cm  chunks. Whisk 1/4 cup whole milk yogurt, add one pinch of salt and 1 tbsp finely sliced mint leaves. Mix well, garnish with more mint leaves before serving.

Kumato tomato, Kale leaf, Broccoli, Green beans, green chili,garlic.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Fall foliage around home captured on 26th October with cell phone.

Here in Cary fall foliage is in its peak colorful phase. As predicted  in September  this years colors are extra bright and vibrant. Today morning I walked  around home, 50-60 ft  distance along side wooded area. I enjoyed several fall color shades, picked up few fall colored leaves, got them home, made collage. It was wonderful feeling.  All images are captured with cell phone, Enjoy.

Panicled Aster flower that blooms in fall.

Upside down fallen leaf, I turned it and took one more image.

Fall season beauty of Dogwood tree, deep maroon colored leaves.

Assorted fall colored leaves from 7-8 different trees.

Fall color shades of Sweet gum Tree leaves.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Ten Fall colored assorted leaves picked from the front yard.(One unique Tri-Colored Red Maple Leaf)

On September 3rd, I  opened the front door to feel the fresh air, noticed few fall colored leaves were fallen over the lawn. I picked  few leaves, spent around 10 minutes in arranging them on the  side walk surface, took few images. One of the Carolina red maple leaf  was very unique with its tri-colored pattern. I also got one tiny red maple leaf, these two leaves made a beautiful pair. It was refreshing to spend just ten minutes outdoors observing fall colored leaves.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Chinese Yard long bean Salad with fresh coconut and Carrots.

Today morning first I thought to prepare long bean subzi to pack with rotis for lunch but later change of thought and ended up making  long bean (chawli chya shenga) salad with  lettuce, carrots and sliced fresh coconut with simple drizzle of ready made Greek Salad dressing. This is simple salad  enriched with vegetable and fresh coconut slices, a nice twist to every day subzi. All images in this salad post are taken with the cell phone.

Salad Ingredients :
(Makes one serving of Salad.)
  • Iceberg lettuce - Chopped - 2 cup lightly packed
  • 8-10 Yard long beans - cut into 1-inch long pieces.(1 Cup yield, Pre boil in microwave for 5-6 minutes.)
  • 1 Carrot - cut into small pieces. (match shape with cut beans.) Pre boil in microwave for 4 minutes.
  • 1/4 Cup Fresh coconut - thinly sliced pieces
  • 1 T.spoon - Diced bottled Jalapeno. (chopped green chillies can be used.)
  • 1/4 Cup - fresh cilantro leaves for garnish.
  • 1 Tb.spoon - Greek dressing with Feta, black olives and Olive Oil ( I used Kens Steak House.) In absence of Greek dressing use 1 tsp Vinegar, 1.5 tsp extra virgin olive oil, 1 tbsp crumbled feta cheese.
Lettuce, Carrots, Fresh sliced coconut, long beans.

Preparation method for Chinese long bean Salad.
  1. Slice or tear 2 Iceberg lettuce leaves into small pieces, about  2 cup lightly packed quantity.
  2. Slightly snap off both end tips of  each long bean, then slice into 1 inch pieces. Place sliced beans into a microwave safe bowl filled with water, add 1/4 tsp salt, stir and  boil for 5-6 minutes. Drain out water, allow beans to cool.
  3. Cut carrot into similar shape and size like long beans, boil in microwave for 3-4 minutes without adding salt. Drain and allow to cool.
  4. Cut few pieces from fresh broken coconut, peel off brown skin with potato peeler, slice into thin one inch size pieces.
  5. In a medium size bowl  combine chopped lettuce leaves, boiled and cooled carrot and long bean pieces, coconut slices. Add 1 tsp diced bottled jalapeno, 1 tbsp ready made Greek dressing with feta, black olives, olive oil. (make sure you thoroughly shake salad dressing bottle before pouring out.) 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves. Toss to mix well, if needed you can add a tiny pinch of salt. For more coconut flavor sprinkle little fresh grated coconut. Enjoy this salad as a meal or side dish.