This version of shakshouka makes a great topper for crusty bread, uses a good blend of fresh + pantry ingredients – and makes a bonus second meal if you swirl some of your leftover sauce in with noodles.
It’s also DH approved, and he’s not a fan of skin-on tomatoes. He could live without the spinach, but we had greens and needed chlorophyll.
This would also be great with chickpeas for added protein and either scrambled or poached eggs/substitute cooked in the sauce. I wanted to keep my eggs separate to maximize leftovers. Scrambled soft tofu would be fantastic.
gluten-free, paleo, vegetarian, vegan, halal
1 small jar fire roasted peppers in oil
2 hands cherry tomatoes
1 large onion
4 Tbsp. zaatar
1 Tbsp. smoked paprika
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
1/2 c. tinned tomatoes (I used crushed but use what you have)
3 – 4 cloves garlic – 2-3 minced and 1 or 2 whole with the end sliced off
Thinly slice the onion and sauté on medium in 1 Tbsp. of the oil that comes from the jar of peppers until soft and lightly brown in spots.
Add the sambal and 2 – 3 cloves minced garlic. Sauté a minute or two more to meld together.
While that is working, remove the peppers from the oil and roughly chop.
Add the tomatoes and peppers and sauté until the tomatoes burst.
While the tomatoes are doing their thing, roughly chop the parsley, slice the bread into thick slices and drizzle with some of the pepper oil.
Broil the bread until your desired toast level has been reached. Remove from the oven and rub with the cut end of the reserved garlic clove. Set aside.
When the tomatoes have burst (with or without a little help), add the Zaatar, smoked paprika, salt & pepper. Stir to combine and let sauté a minute or so to meld.
Add the tomato paste, canned tomatoes, and half a cup of water. Bring up to a boil, reduce the heat, add the spinach + half the parsley on top, and simmer 7 – 8 minutes. As soon as that spinach wilts and can be thoroughly mixed in is the time to add eggs if you are cooking them like a traditional Shakshouka.
If you are not, fry your eggs separately in a little of the pepper oil to your desired doneness.
Serves 2 for a light dinner + makes enough sauce to be used for another night’s pasta
I make this – or a variation on this – quite often for lunch later in the week, when I’ve got leftovers kicking around in the fridge, am out of my main protein, and still have some of this week’s spinach hanging around that is quickly going to age itself right out of my fridge.
For this version, I resisted the temptation to go Southeast Asian like usual (this dish 99.9% of the time turns out vaguely Japanese), and went Indian instead. I’m glad I broke out of my comfort zone a little and I think I’ll make this again on purpose for dinner some night.
To reheat your rice – any rice – without it drying out, add a Tablespoon or two of water, put the lid back on really loosely and zap in the microwave for :45 to 1:00. Boom. Steamed and refreshed rice.
Fry the eggs to your liking in the oil, seasoning with salt and pepper and adding a liberal sprinkle of turmeric when you flip. Add the spinach on top of that to wilt a couple seconds while the yolks finish setting to your desired doneness (I love a good runny yolk, so I separated my whites from yolks, scooted them to the side and added the spinach more to that side so I could see to yank the yolks when they were just barely set).
Grate the ginger and garlic into the rice.
Mince the chili (de-seeding if necessary) and add to the rice.
Add the eggs on top, along with a small hand of the crispy chickpeas.
It seems our Lockdown staple of ramen noodles isn’t going anywhere any time soon. DH and I are both still craving comfort, and I’m still on the war path when it comes to wasting ingredients and clearing the pantry – so we are having some mish-mashed meals as of late.
Which is all fine, provided I can continue to find ways to add at least a little nutritional value to dinner. Some sort of vegetable.
This dish elevates some pantry staples admirably, adding two sources of protein (if you add meat), and a veggie that can also serve as a freezer cleaner.
A note on ramen: I used pot noodles (aka cup o’ noodles) for this recipe. We are loving the Korean brand Budok lately – the base flavoring I went with was chicken cheese, but this would be great with pretty much any base flavor. Mushroom, chicken, chili chicken, shrimp, curry – all would be delicious.
vegetarian and vegan if you don’t add meat, gluten-free with substitutions
Peanutty Fancy-Ish Ramen
1 pot instant ramen per person (any flavor will do, or sub rice noodles for gluten free – a little chicken or veggie bouillon would add some nice flavor if you are not using the flavor packet that comes with the noodles)
2 Tbsp. peanut butter (I used a low sugar variety)
1/4 c. soy sauce, tamari or coconut aminos
1 Tbsp. sambal olek (chili garlic sauce)
2 tsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. honey (sub agave for vegan)
2 small scallions, sliced thinly
Optional: leftover ground chicken or beef, soft boiled egg, fish cakes, leftover fried tofu, or other additional protein source
Sesame seeds for garnish
Combine the peanut butter, soy sauce, sambal, sesame oil and honey in a small pot over low heat. Simmer, stirring, until well combined and beginning to thicken. If your heat is too high and this mixture dries out too much like mine did, add a Tablespoon or two of water, stir quickly to combine, and move off the heat for a second or so to cool down a bit.
While the sauce is working, add frozen spinach to the noodle pots and fill with boiling water. Let sit 3 minutes and drain.
Add the noodles to the pot with the sauce, along with scallions, any additional protein sources, and the seasoning packet. Stir well to combine and garnish with sesame seeds.
This recipe came out of a need. A need for a roast beef sandwich. Where I live, the options for lunch meat of any variety is abysmal – and roast beef is nonexistent.
I’ve been missing my favorite Boar’s Head London Porter something fierce lately, and the paltry French Dip offerings I’ve found (which are wholly not French dip sandwiches and range from sad to inedible) just aren’t cutting it.
I’m still working on my uncured sandwich beef recipe, but this onion roll was too good not to share in the meantime. It’s a Frankenstein of a few different recipes and techniques, most notably a video by Joshua Weissman, Making The Arby’s Beef ‘N Cheddar At Home | But Better.
I used his recipe for the main part, but fleshed out the technique from how I generally make bread at home. I was pleasantly surprised at how light and fluffy these were – I’m imagining because of the extra yeast than what I’m used to with my lazy person Artisan bread – and I got 9 buns out of my batch, so there were plenty of extras with which to make egg sandwiches out of. Y’all know I love a good egg recipe. Yum.
Nope, nothing – not even gluten-free or vegetarian. This may be the first time in the history of this blog I’ve ever posted a recipe that falls into zero dietary categories. Oops. Still good, though.
Caramelized Onion Rolls
2 yellow onions
1 Tbsp. butter – chilled is fine
2 tsp. sugar
Hefty sprinkle salt
Thinly slice the onions and add to a pan over low heat with the butter, salt and sugar. Cook, stirring frequently, until deeply brown. The browner and jammer the better. I’m poo at having the patience necessary to do this, so I always end up jacking the heat up to medium and working through half-burnt onions. Which I happen to enjoy, so you do you.
Let sit to cool. You don’t want to add hot onions to your dough.
3 1/4 cup flour – I used a mix of mostly white all purpose with a little wheat left in the container; he used bread flour. I’m sure bread flour is even better, but I can’t be bothered
3 Tbsp. butter, softened
1 Tbsp. instant yeast
2 tsp. sea salt
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cup lukewarm water
In a large bowl, stir the flour, yeast and salt together. Crack the eggs in, add the butter, and slowly stir in the water. Chuck in the previously caramelized onions.
When your flour is incorporated, i.e. not running around like lots of dust in the bottom of the bowl, dump onto a floured surface. He used a dough hook on a Kitchen Aid mixer and let run until … ? … I quit paying attention to that part at dough hook; I don’t have one, so I went old school.
Knead for about 10 minutes, or until the dough is just tacky to the touch. This will take a lot of dusting of your work surface to get your dough to quit sticking. That’s okay; you won’t kill the dough by doing what you need to do with it.
When your arms are dead and your dough is where you want it, add back to the bowl, cover, and let sit 2 – 3 hours in room temperature to rise.
About an hour before dinner, punch your dough down and separate into about 9 balls. I did this by pinching off about a hand full, lightly rolling in my hands to form something that looks like a roll, and placing on a silicone lined baking sheet. I ended up with 9 roughly same-sized balls.
Cover and let sit 30 – 40 minutes.
While your dough is resting, preheat the oven to 200C/375F.
*Note: If you want your buns to be shiny, brush with a little egg wash before baking. It won’t affect the taste, but they will be prettier. A little butter brush would also be a nice addition.
Bake 15 minutes or until browned but not burnt on the top and sounding hollow when you knock on the top.
As you can see from my last post (see pantry clearing post #1), my pantry is all over the map – but the bulk of the ingredients center on Southeast Asia, specifically Japan.
Japanese is a cuisine my DH and I both love and both crave when we either need a little comfort (among other cuisines, tbh) but feel like we need to be a little nice to our bodies and digestive systems.
This dinner is quick, easy, and feels like a healthy hug. If raw egg yolk freaks you out, omit.
Chili Tuna Rice
1 cup premade sushi rice (1/2 cup short grain rice cooked in 2 cups water + 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar, 1 Tbsp. sesame oil, and a few grinds salt)
1/2 can chili spiced tuna, drained
2 Tbsp. dried wakame
1 tsp. powder-style chicken bouillon
1/2 cup hot water
1/2 tsp. ginger garlic paste
1 Tbsp. coconut aminos
1 tsp. butter
Generous sprinkle toasted sesame seeds
1 green onion, thinly sliced
Set the sushi rice on to cook however you cook rice. While the rice is cooking, boil the 1/2 cup water.
Add the wakame and chicken bouillon to a small bowl and add the boiling water over top. Stir to combine and let sit until the seaweed is reconstituted. Drain loosely when you’re ready to serve and add back into the bowl.
Add the butter, rice, coconut aminos, ginger garlic paste, tuna, and egg yolk. Stir well to combine.
Top with the sesame seeds and green onions and serve.
I set out to make a chimichurri-based salad, and ended up taking a trip to India instead when at the last minute I discovered my herbs had betrayed me. And it works.
Bombay chutney is a condiment used in a popular Indian street food sandwich and is kiiiiinda akin to the green mint chutney sauce served alongside a number of dishes alongside tamarind sauce. My version is a beautiful shade of emerald and has a nice spicy kick. It’s addictive, and I can’t wait to try making something akin to the actual sandwich, because I can only imagine how Bomb it would be with potato.
Like mashed potatoes. In a patty …. 🤤 But I digress.
This base recipe is great for lunch or dinner – I served it hash-style when fresh with some leftover Beyond Meat bratwurst & egg and again the next day for lunch with my favorite tuna and some bright crunch. Both ways were fantastic, but I think day 3’s lunch was actually my favorite.
gluten-free, vegetarian base, vegan base, paleo base
Lunch-To-Dinner Bombay Chimi
1 head cauliflower
1 small red onion
4 cloves garlic
1/4 cup Bombay Chutney
1/4 cup neutral oil
Preheat the oven to 200C/375F and prep a baking sheet.
Break the cauliflower up into bite-sized pieces and spread out over the prepped pan. Halve and thinly slice the onion; add. Thinly slice the garlic; add.
Sprinkle liberally with salt & pepper.
In a small bowl, combine the chutney and oil. Pour over the veggies on the pan and toss well to combine, making sure to hit each piece.
Roast 25 minutes or until deeply browned.
1 leftover and cooked Beyond Meat bratwurst per person, sliced into rounds
1 – 2 eggs per person (optional)
1 handful chopped green beans
2 tsp. neutral oil
1 tsp. butter (vegan or otherwise)
In a large skillet over medium high heat, stir-fry the green beans in the oil until browned. Season with salt & pepper and add the bratwurst. Stir-fry until warmed through. Push to the side, add the butter and an egg per person to the pan. Fry until your desired doneness is reached. Serve with about 1/4 of the cauliflower per person.
1 medium cucumber, chopped
250g cherry tomatoes, halved
1 can chili (red pepper) tuna, drained (optional)
To your leftover cauliflower, add the rest of the ingredients and toss. Warm to room temp if desired by zapping for :30/:45 or so and tossing.
Serves 2 if you’ve got half the cauliflower left; 3 if you only fed 1 the night before.
I just got back from a fantastic vacation spent exploring a new place – and a new food culture – and wanted to come home and continue that goodness.
Random tidbit of information: tempeh is actually from Indonesia, it’s not just an OG hippie food.
That has little to do with this recipe (though most of the dishes of Nasi Goreng I had in Bali came with sides, including some ridiculously delicious tempeh).
Nasi Goreng is one of the dishes typically associated with Indonesia (some say it’s the national dish), although it’s popular in other Southeast Asian countries as well as the Netherlands. This dish is basically just fried rice – with no singular recipe, instead typically consisting of leftovers from the previous day.
This version of the dish doesn’t taste exactly like what I had on vacation, but it’s delicious nonetheless. I feel the sauces I had in Indonesia were richer, and in subsequent versions I’ll be working toward that – but this is a great starting place.
Can be made gluten free (just sweeten some coconut aminos), paleo (swap out the rice for Cauli rice and the ketjap), pescatarian (omit the chicken), or lacto-ovo vegetarian (omit the shrimp, shrimp paste & chicken)
Nasi Goreng: Version 1
3 cups leftover cooked rice (I used short grain sushi rice)
4 cloves garlic
1/4 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup frozen carrots
1 bok choy
2 eggs + 1 per person
250g chicken breast
200g tiny shrimp, chopped
4 Tbsp. prepared ketchup
4 Tbsp. ketjap manis
2 Tbsp. sambal olek
2 tsp. shrimp paste
Salt & pepper
Chop the chicken into small bite-sized pieces, liberally season with salt and pepper, and sautée in 1 – 2 Tbsp. neutral oil until cooked through. Remove.
While the chicken is working, mince the shallot and garlic. Chop the bok choy and separate the stems from the leaves. Defrost the frozen veggies. Assemble the rest of the ingredients. Mix the ketchup, ketjap and sambal to form a sauce. Crack 2 eggs and lightly scramble.
Fry the shallot & garlic in 1 Tbsp. neutral oil over medium-high heat in the chicken pan, making sure to scrape up any browned bits and incorporating them.
When the shallots go translucent, add the shrimp paste. Stir to combine.
Add the bok choy stems and stir-fry until beginning to soften. Add the peas, carrots and bok choy leaves. Stir fry a minute or so until combined.
Add the rice, chicken & shrimp. Stir fry a minute or so to combine.
Add the sauce, stir to combine, and push the rice to the sides of the pan to make a well in the center. Add the scrambled eggs, let sit a minute to firm up on the bottom, and stir through the rice mixture until cooked.
Serve topped with an egg that’s been fried on medium-high heat until the edges are really crispy and the yolk is just set.
Serves 4 – 6 depending upon whether you are serving with sides (popular sides include: tempeh, fried tofu, hard boiled and then deep fried eggs, green bean and cabbage salads, and shrimp chips – plus I’m sure more – this is just what I was served as sides; I’m sure every household has its own version)