Archive for October, 2012

Avocado Shake (Redone)

Happy Halloween! Today I thought I’d share something of the halloween spirit (and for everyday of the year). For me, this is just your average recipe. However, I’ve noticed that a lot of people are nervous whenever they are offered anything green. And so, I present my green avocado shake. I’ve already posted an avocado shake recipe before (see here), but in my opinion, is one is so much better. To add more of a Halloween vibe, pour the drink into a clear plastic cup. Draw on a Frankenstein face and top with a few dark chocolate chips! Note: the Frankenstein idea is not originally mine (you gotta love pinterest!).

I hope everyone has a safe Halloween and Trick or Treating tonight! Unfortunately here in NJ, Trick or Treating is being pushed back to this weekend due to the damage from Hurricane Sandy. My prayers go out to everyone in my state and on the East Coast who were affected.

Avocado Shake (Redone)

Ingredients:

1 avocado

2/3 cup plain yogurt

2/3 cup milk

1/2 tsp vanilla

dash of cinnamon

1-2 scoops vanilla protein powder

3-4 ice cubes

Directions:

Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth.

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Baked BBQ Onion Rings

Onion rings have been on my to-do list for a looong time now. My first attempt was not so good. And so, I had to rebuild my ego up before trying again. This time, I am proud to say, I have succeeded in making the perfect onion ring. And it is soooo worth the first failure to be able to stuff these in my mouth. My brother and I were left by ourselves last weekend and we had the pleasure of gobbling these down for dinner along with avocado nuggets (recipe soon to come!) Just make sure to use a good BBQ sauce!

In other non-related food news, I am very excited for today. Why? It’s my birthday! And this so happens to mean that I get treated to my favorite food, sushi! (Is it bad that my greatest joy comes from consuming raw fish???) Now oddly enough, I’m very much hoping that Hurricane Sandy comes through strong tomorrow night so my college closes down for Monday. That way, I can get an extra day to study so I can enjoy a study-free birthday without feeling guilty. According to the weather channel (yes, I know, such a reliable source) South Jersey is supposed to get hammered. I already know people are stocking up on water bottles and flash lights. As for me, I think I’ll just barricade myself in with some left-over sushi and onion rings 🙂

Baked Barbecue Onion Rings

Ingredients: 

2 medium onions

2 tbsp whole wheat flour

1/3 cup barbecue sauce (I used cajun-seasoned sauce)

1 egg

1/2 tsp garlic powder

salt and pepper

1 and 1/3 cup panko crumbs

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and spay a pan with oil. Peel off the the hard outer layer of the onions. With a medallion, slice the onion into 1/4 inch thick slices. (Careful with your fingers!) In a shallow bowl, combine and mix the flour, barbecue sauce, egg, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. In another shallow bowl, place and spread out panko crumbs. Either using your hands or tongs, take one onion ring and place it in the barbecue sauce mixture. Shake off the excess sauce and place in panko bowl. Completely cover with crumbs and, again, shake off the excess and place on the baking pan. Repeat with every onion. Bake in oven for 18 minutes.

Bruschetta

I had given up on my garden. To me, it just looks like a weedy wasteland. Yet, my dad trekked on through there and, what do you know, my tomato and bell pepper plants seem to have come back from the dead. My “zombie” tomatoes (in the spirit of the season) went to good use in order to make this basic bruschetta. (Note: no mutations have occurred from eating this as of yet).

Bruschetta 

Ingredients:

4 medium tomatoes, chopped

2 shallots, minced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp basil

1/4 tsp garlic powder

salt and pepper  

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Serve on top of toasted bread or crackers (a lot of times, I’ll just eat it with a spoon) and sprinkle on more basil.

Leek and Acorn Squash Risotto

And another thing to add to the list of what makes Fall so awesome- squash. Yum, yum, yum! Squash soup, stuffed squash (try saying that 10 times fast) and squash fries. And now this Leek and Acorn Squash Risotto. The taste of Fall- quite literally- I added a lot of cinnamon and nutmeg to mine and my house ended up smelling very much like cinnamon sticks and pumpkin pie 🙂   

Leek and Acorn Squash Risotto 

Ingredients:

1 acorn squash

4 cups chicken broth

1 tbsp olive oil

1 large leek, chopped

2 garlic cloves

1 cup uncooked rice

1/4 cup white wine

paprika to taste

nutmeg to taste

cinnamon to taste

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Cut squash in half and remove seeds. Place halves downward on a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil. Roast at 400 degrees for 40 minutes. Let cool. Remove the squash’s peel and mash the pulp (it’s ok if it’s a bit chunky).

Heat oil in a pot. Add leek and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes. Add rice and sauté for 1 minute. Stir in wine and enough chicken broth until rice is covered. Cover with a lid and let the liquid absorb before adding in more chicken broth.Continue with this for the amount of time required to cook your rice. Stir in squash pulp. If needed, add in chicken broth until the desired consistency is reached. Add paprika, nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt and pepper. (I didn’t measure the amount of cinnamon and nutmeg I used, but the risotto had a nice nutmeg-y flavor when it was finished).

Tomato Soup

All this week, I have not been feeling well. Very odd because I have not been sick in years (maybe it was just severe allergies?) Regardless, this week made me realize how much I want to be a little kid again.

WARNING: rant ahead. Feel free to skip to the recipe if you have no interest in hearing someone’s minor life problems.

Now back in the good old days, being sick meant staying home from school, watching TV all day, and scarfing down hot soup while being nursed back to health. Not so much anymore. I still had to drag myself to school (God forbid you tell a professor you were too sick to attend class), give presentations, take some exams, and do large quantities of studying and homework. Not to mention, come home to find that large bills for car insurance and eye care are on their way. And not one ounce of hot soup to be found 😦 What I really wanted was for someone to make me this tomato soup (I couldn’t in fear of getting someone else sick).

School, work, and bills. I know, I know, suck it up, right? But even so, wouldn’t it be nice to be a kid again, even for a day? Ok. I’m done my rant. Thanks for putting up with me (if anybody actually read this). I promise I don’t do that often. Now, on a lighter and yummier note…

Tomato Soup

Ingredients:

1 tbsp olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 onion, chopped

2 28oz cans of plum tomatoes with juice

1/2 cup chicken broth

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

basil to taste

Directions:

In a large pot, heat oil. Add garlic and onions and sauté for 5 minutes. Add in tomatoes and juice. Crush the tomatoes with the back of a spoon. Add in chicken broth, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes. Puree with an immersion blender (if you don’t have one, transfer to a blender) until desired consistency. Add and mix in basil before serving.