Monday, January 21, 2013

A Hearty Vegetable Pasta Sauce

Are you always trying to get your toddler to eat vegetables? This vegetable pasta sauce is sure to get not only the little ones, but even grown-ups all excited about dinner. To make the sauce, you will need:

One yellow bell pepper chopped.
Two tomatoes, seeds removed, chopped.
Half of a large yellow onion, chopped.
One carrot, chopped.
One tbsp garlic powder.
One tsp fresh, ground pepper.
Two tbsp tomato ketchup.
One tsp of dried basil and oregano each.
Salt to taste and a pinch of sugar.
Two tbsp of olive oil/canola oil to saute.

Cook about two cups of whole wheat pasta and set aside. Reserve the water in which the pasta was cooked to add to the sauce. I normally add a dash of salt and olive oil to the water when I cook the pasta.

In a pan, heat the oil and add the chopped onions. Once the onions turn translucent or are golden-brown, add the garlic powder and black pepper. Saute for about 30 seconds, then add the chopped carrot and the bell pepper. Let the vegetables cook in the oil for about two minutes. Now add the chopped tomatoes, stir, cover and cook for another two minutes. The tomatoes should begin to cook. Lift the cover, add the basil and oregano. Stir thoroughly and add the ketchup. At this point you also want to add about 1/2 cup of the water in which you cooked the pasta. Cover and cook until the vegetables are cooked. Now add the salt and sugar. Cool, blend the sauce and transfer it again to the saucepan. Warm up this sauce and add the cooked pasta. Stir, serve hot!

You can add shredded cheese on top as an option. I prefer this pasta without cheese! A salad on the side and you have a meal. Scale up the ingredients for more servings. This recipe should suffice for a family of three, two grown-ups and a toddler if you have a side dish.


Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Decadent Pineapple-Coconut-Macadamia Nut Cake

Hello World! Its been so long since I posted a new recipe. I have been very busy with family and it has been a hectic two years. I have been cooking, a lot actually, but with little time to devote to my collection here. Life has now returned to a slightly slower pace so I am back, with more recipes for the vegetarian palate.

I have been baking for quite some time now, and some time ago, a friend of mine mentioned to me that her daughters love to eat cake. Well, which young kid doesn't right? But I needed to whip up something without using eggs. So I decided to bake a cake with pineapple juice, coconut and macadamia nuts, a classic combination in my opinion. The cake came out beautifully and and my friend's kids loved it. We did too, and it was all polished off in a couple of days.

Here are the ingredients:

1 cup - whole wheat pastry flour.
1/4 cup - all purpose flour.
1 can of condensed milk.
1 tsp baking powder.
1/2 tsp baking soda.
1/4 tsp cardamom powder.
1/4 tsp salt.
1/4 cup melted butter.
1/2 cup pure pineapple juice.
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut (I use the one from Bob's Red Mill).
1/4 cup chopped (toasted) macadamia nuts (and walnuts if you like).
Note - all the sugar comes from the sweetened condensed milk for this recipe.

Grease a cake pan with some melted butter and preheat the oven to 350 degree Celsius. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours, the baking soda, baking powder, cardamom powder, salt and the unsweetened coconut. Mix thoroughly. In a separate bowl, combine the condensed milk, melted butter and pineapple juice. Now, pour this liquid mixture slowly into the mixed dry ingredients and blend together with a spatula. Pour this cake mixture into the cake pan and top off with the macadamia nuts. Bake until cooked, i.e. when a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the baked cake.

Enjoy with some vanilla ice cream if you wish. We ate it straight and it was delicious.