Archive for tapas

Recipes for Health: Two Eggplant Bruschettas

Posted in Epicurean Chronicles, Epicurean Ventures, Foodies Fodder, Gourmet, Health & Wellness, Nutrition, Recipes, Tapas, Weight Management with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 23, 2011 by Angela

Here is a Tuesday Two-Fer for eggplant tapas.

Sicilian Bruschetta

Photo: Lisa Romerein; Styling: Rori Trovato

Ingredients

· 1 loaf (1 lb.) crusty Italian bread such as ciabatta, cut into 1/3-in.-thick slices

· About 6 tbsp. olive oil, divided

· 1 large eggplant, cut into 1/2-in. dice (about 4 cups)

· 2 tablespoons minced garlic

· 1 cup chopped celery

· 1 cup chopped red bell pepper

· 1 cup chopped green olives

· 1/4 cup red-wine vinegar

· 1/4 cup tomato paste

· 1/2 cup raisins

· 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts

· 2 teaspoons kosher salt

· 2 teaspoons sugar

· 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

· 1/4 cup chopped fresh oregano

· 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

· 1 cup ricotta cheese

Preparation

· 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Lay bread on a baking sheet and drizzle with about 2 tbsp. oil. Bake until toasted and light golden brown, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

· 2. Heat 2 tbsp. oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook eggplant, stirring often, until softened and starting to brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

· 3. In the same pan, cook garlic in remaining 2 tbsp. oil, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add celery, bell pepper, and olives, stirring to combine, and cook until softened, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup water, the vinegar, tomato paste, raisins, and pine nuts and cook until heated through. Stir in reserved eggplant, salt, and sugar, then mix in herbs.

· 4. Serve caponata with ricotta on the toasted bread.

· Make ahead: Chill caponata up to 2 days and store toasts airtight up to 2 days.

· Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.

Sunset
MAY 2009

· Calories: 275

· Calories from fat: 59%

· Protein: 8.2g

· Fat: 18g

· Saturated fat: 3.2g

· Carbohydrate: 29g

· Fiber: 2.8g

· Sodium: 715mg

· Cholesterol: 10mg

Yield: Makes 5 cups (enough for 12 servings, plus leftovers)

Eggplant w/Mint Bruschetta

Photo: Scott Peterson

Ingredients

· 1/3 cup olive oil

· 1 small red onion, diced

· 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced

· 1 medium eggplant, diced

· 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

· 1/2 teaspoon dried red chile flakes

· 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

· 6 mint leaves, chopped

· Basic Bruschetta (see recipe)

· Extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling

Preparation

· 1. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute, then add eggplant, salt, chile flakes, and pepper. Stir to coat with oil and turn heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring every few minutes, until eggplant is soft, about 20 minutes.

· 2. Stir in mint. Let mixture cool to room temperature and spoon onto bruschettas. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil.

· Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving with bruschetta.

Jennifer McIlvaine, Bruschettina, Ballard, Columbia City, and Edmonds, WA, Sunset
AUGUST 2006

Amount per serving

· Calories: 284

· Calories from fat: 79%

· Protein: 2.3g

· Fat: 25g

· Saturated fat: 3.5g

· Carbohydrate: 13g

· Fiber: 1.7g

· Sodium: 459mg

· Cholesterol: 0.0mg

Halloumi

Posted in Epicurean Chronicles, Epicurean Ventures, Gourmet, Nutrition, Recipes, Tapas with tags , , , , , , , on June 1, 2011 by Angela

I’m not big on two of the most popular dairy products: milk and ice cream. And no, it’s not a lactose intolerance issue. Oddly enough I do like cottage cheese, an occasional yogurt and sour cream/dips. But my biggest indulgence has always been cheese. I love it for a light snack or enhancement.

For a while I had virtually eliminated cow’s milk totally from my diet during which time I heavily explored other cheese alternatives and was able to obtain favorable substitutes.

It was also during this time that I branched out and tried other animal sources (sheep, goat) for milk and find them preferable in a lot of recipes. I watch a lot of cooking shows and attend a lot of demos, etc. and recently I tried a new cheese which I will be definitely adding to my favorites: HALLOUMI.

Halloumi is a semi-soft to hard, white cheese made either from sheep’s milk, goat’s milk or combination of the two and has a slight saltiness to it from being brine-cured. It’s mainly prevalent in Greece and Middle Eastern cuisine.

What I found most interesting about this cheese was that due to its higher-than-average melting point it is great for frying and grilling. Halloumi browns nicely and completely without any oil.

In talking with the server, the addition of any cooking oil actually breaks down the cheese and causes it to separate a bit. I suppose if that’s what you wanted to do to infuse some flavor that you could try it out to see what happens. However, as an appetizer, I think it’s a definite winner.

Of course, I took to my favorite cooking websites and found many recipes to use but here are a couple of recipes that I think would be great to try during the summer months:

Marinated Halloumi Cheese Kabobs with Herbs

Serves 2

Halloumi, a cheese from Cyprus that’s made primarily from goat’s and sheep’s milk, is similar to fresh mozzarella. Serve this appetizer with oven-roasted potatoes and garlic with rosemary, if you like.

Ingredients

12 ounces (350 g) halloumi cheese, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) cubes
1 medium pepper (any color)
1 medium red onion
4 medium cap mushrooms

Marinade
1 level teaspoon each of chopped fresh thyme, oregano, rosemary, mint and parsley (or similar combination of whatever herbs are available)
1 fat clove garlic
1/4 cup (55 ml) extra virgin olive oil
Juice 1 lime
Freshly milled black pepper

Method

You will also need two 12-inch (30 cm) flat metal skewers.

Begin by cutting pepper and onion into even-sized pieces about 1 inch (2.5 cm) square, to match the size of cubes of cheese. Then chop herbs and garlic quite finely and combine them with the oil, lime juice and some freshly milled pepper. Now place cheese, onion, pepper and mushrooms in a large, roomy, non-metallic bowl and pour marinade over them, mixing very thoroughly. Cover and place in the fridge for 24 hours, and try to give them a stir round every now and then.

When you’re ready to barbecue kabobs, try the two skewers and thread a mushroom on first (pushing it right down) followed by a piece of onion, a piece of pepper and a cube of cheese. Repeat this with more onion, pepper and cheese, finishing with a mushroom at the end. Place the kabobs over the hot coals, turning frequently till they are tinged brown at the edges, about 10 minutes. Brush on any leftover marinade juices as you turn them.

Nutrition

Per serving (about 11oz/311g-wt.): 730 calories (510 from fat), 57g total fat, 30g saturated fat, 42g protein, 14g total carbohydrate (2g dietary fiber, 6g sugar), 115mg cholesterol, 890mg sodium

Grilled Halloumi Salad

Serves 4

Distinctive Halloumi cheese pairs with crisp red onions, tender zucchini, zesty lime juice and fruity olive oil in this grilled delight. Halloumi, a goat and sheep milk cheese, doesn’t melt so you can throw it right on the grill. Delicious as an appetizer, add some Kalamata olives and pita bread for a light summer entrée.

Ingredients

1 (6-ounce) package Halloumi cheese
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 red onions, thickly sliced into rounds
2 zucchini, thickly sliced into rounds
2 limes
Black pepper to taste

Method

Preheat grill.

Slice Halloumi in half lengthwise then rub all over with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Drizzle one tablespoon of the olive oil on the onions and 1 tablespoon on the zucchini. Grill Halloumi, onions, and zucchini, turning frequently, until they begin to blacken, 2 to 4 minutes per side.

Transfer Halloumi to a cutting board and quarter each piece. Arrange Halloumi, onions, and zucchini on a large platter. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon oil, then squeeze limes over the top and sprinkle with pepper. Serve warm.

Nutrition

Per serving (210g-wt.): 250 calories (180 from fat), 20g total fat, 8g saturated fat, 10g protein, 10g total carbohydrate (2g dietary fiber, 4g sugar), 20mg cholesterol, 170mg sodium

Halloumi

Posted in Epicurean Chronicles, Epicurean Ventures, Gourmet, Nutrition, Recipes, Tapas with tags , , , , , , , on June 1, 2011 by Angela

I’m not big on two of the most popular dairy products: milk and ice cream. And no, it’s not a lactose intolerance issue. Oddly enough I do like cottage cheese, an occasional yogurt and sour cream/dips. But my biggest indulgence has always been cheese. I love it for a light snack or enhancement.

For a while I had virtually eliminated cow’s milk totally from my diet during which time I heavily explored other cheese alternatives and was able to obtain favorable substitutes.

It was also during this time that I branched out and tried other animal sources (sheep, goat) for milk and find them preferable in a lot of recipes. I watch a lot of cooking shows and attend a lot of demos, etc. and recently I tried a new cheese which I will be definitely adding to my favorites: HALLOUMI.

Halloumi is a semi-soft to hard, white cheese made either from sheep’s milk, goat’s milk or combination of the two and has a slight saltiness to it from being brine-cured. It’s mainly prevalent in Greece and Middle Eastern cuisine.

What I found most interesting about this cheese was that due to its higher-than-average melting point it is great for frying and grilling. Halloumi browns nicely and completely without any oil.

In talking with the server, the addition of any cooking oil actually breaks down the cheese and causes it to separate a bit. I suppose if that’s what you wanted to do to infuse some flavor that you could try it out to see what happens. However, as an appetizer, I think it’s a definite winner.

Of course, I took to my favorite cooking websites and found many recipes to use but here are a couple of recipes that I think would be great to try during the summer months:

Marinated Halloumi Cheese Kabobs with Herbs

Serves 2

Halloumi, a cheese from Cyprus that’s made primarily from goat’s and sheep’s milk, is similar to fresh mozzarella. Serve this appetizer with oven-roasted potatoes and garlic with rosemary, if you like.

Ingredients

12 ounces (350 g) halloumi cheese, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) cubes
1 medium pepper (any color)
1 medium red onion
4 medium cap mushrooms

Marinade
1 level teaspoon each of chopped fresh thyme, oregano, rosemary, mint and parsley (or similar combination of whatever herbs are available)
1 fat clove garlic
1/4 cup (55 ml) extra virgin olive oil
Juice 1 lime
Freshly milled black pepper

Method

You will also need two 12-inch (30 cm) flat metal skewers.

Begin by cutting pepper and onion into even-sized pieces about 1 inch (2.5 cm) square, to match the size of cubes of cheese. Then chop herbs and garlic quite finely and combine them with the oil, lime juice and some freshly milled pepper. Now place cheese, onion, pepper and mushrooms in a large, roomy, non-metallic bowl and pour marinade over them, mixing very thoroughly. Cover and place in the fridge for 24 hours, and try to give them a stir round every now and then.

When you’re ready to barbecue kabobs, try the two skewers and thread a mushroom on first (pushing it right down) followed by a piece of onion, a piece of pepper and a cube of cheese. Repeat this with more onion, pepper and cheese, finishing with a mushroom at the end. Place the kabobs over the hot coals, turning frequently till they are tinged brown at the edges, about 10 minutes. Brush on any leftover marinade juices as you turn them.

Nutrition

Per serving (about 11oz/311g-wt.): 730 calories (510 from fat), 57g total fat, 30g saturated fat, 42g protein, 14g total carbohydrate (2g dietary fiber, 6g sugar), 115mg cholesterol, 890mg sodium

Grilled Halloumi Salad

Serves 4

Distinctive Halloumi cheese pairs with crisp red onions, tender zucchini, zesty lime juice and fruity olive oil in this grilled delight. Halloumi, a goat and sheep milk cheese, doesn’t melt so you can throw it right on the grill. Delicious as an appetizer, add some Kalamata olives and pita bread for a light summer entrée.

Ingredients

1 (6-ounce) package Halloumi cheese
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 red onions, thickly sliced into rounds
2 zucchini, thickly sliced into rounds
2 limes
Black pepper to taste

Method

Preheat grill.

Slice Halloumi in half lengthwise then rub all over with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Drizzle one tablespoon of the olive oil on the onions and 1 tablespoon on the zucchini. Grill Halloumi, onions, and zucchini, turning frequently, until they begin to blacken, 2 to 4 minutes per side.

Transfer Halloumi to a cutting board and quarter each piece. Arrange Halloumi, onions, and zucchini on a large platter. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon oil, then squeeze limes over the top and sprinkle with pepper. Serve warm.

Nutrition

Per serving (210g-wt.): 250 calories (180 from fat), 20g total fat, 8g saturated fat, 10g protein, 10g total carbohydrate (2g dietary fiber, 4g sugar), 20mg cholesterol, 170mg sodium

Marinated Salmon Hors D’oeuvres

Posted in Gourmet, Health & Wellness, Nutrition, Recipes, Tapas with tags , , , , on December 20, 2010 by Angela

3/4 pound salmon fillet, skin and small bones removed

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon mirin

2 tablespoons sesame oil

2 teaspoons grated or finely chopped fresh ginger

1 ripe but firm avocado

1. Remove all of the pin bones from the salmon, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Place in a bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Toss with the soy sauce, rice vinegar, mirin, sesame oil and ginger. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.

2. Cut the avocado into 1/2-inch cubes, and place in a bowl. Pour some of the marinade from the salmon into the bowl, and toss gently. Thread two pieces of salmon and one avocado cube onto each toothpick. Arrange on a platter and serve.

Yield: Serves 10 to 12 as an hors d’oeuvre.

Advance preparation: You can thread the salmon onto the toothpicks an hour before serving, but wait to add the avocado until shortly before serving so that it doesn’t discolor.

Nutritional information per serving (based on 10 servings): 104 calories; 7 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 19 grams cholesterol; 2 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram dietary fiber; 117 milligrams sodium (does not include salt added during preparation); 8 grams protein

Nutritional information per serving (based on 12 servings): 86 calories; 6 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 0 grams cholesterol; 16 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram dietary fiber; 97 milligrams sodium (does not include salt added during preparation); 7 grams protein

Martha Rose Shulman is the author of "The Very Best of Recipes for Health."

All About the Tapas

Posted in Epicurean Chronicles, Foodies Fodder, Gourmet, Nutrition, Recipes with tags , , , , , on August 13, 2010 by Angela

I’ve toyed around with the idea of putting together a cookbook for a while and recently decided I would set the wheels slowly in motion. Part of that will be to formally take all my recipe modifications and to compile them together. Sounds simple enough right?

Well, my typical mode of cooking is to find a recipe and then begin to reconstruct it using vegetarian, low-fat and other health-reducing substitutions. Sometimes I don’t make the same thing the same way to branch out and have a little more diversity and that’s been fun.

However, when you are cooking for a party of one, there is only so much cooking you will actually & necessarily have to do so this will understandably be an on-going project. I envision doing something along the lines of a Joy Of Cooking with a binder and separator tabs, sections, index and of course, pictures.

Ever since I was younger, I had a very strong disdain for soul food and would not eat. There was one year I sat at the table hours after everyone left because I wouldn’t eat. My willpower won out and from that point on I was never forced to eat anything. If I saw it and wanted it, I’d eat it, if not I’d go hungry or fix something for myself. And this was as at the age of 9-10, so it became a survival thing I guess you could say.

As result of this, I have had very few ‘bad eating habits’ to break, I’m more prone to eating “different things” which end up being incredibly nutritionally sound choices and I gravitated toward eating smaller meals whenever I got hungry.

In keeping with the small meals theme….I am a huge lover of finger foods, soups, salads, appetizers, and hors doeuvres. I pay special attention to these sections of my many cookbooks as well as having specialty books on specific cuisine.

Recently there has been a trend in our city’s revitalization to open more sushi and tapas bars. I haven’t had much time due to personal constraints to really have time to sit and enjoy them but I have poured over the websites and menus to see what I want to try when I am there.

I realize that there is a traditional definition and you can read about the origins here: The History of Tapas http://www.arrakis.es/~jols/tapas/index2.html but for my intents and purposes I will stretch it to include a wider array of choices simply because I like the sound of calling something a tapa.

This weekend I’ll be getting a few written down and then typed so that I can begin to sprinkle a post here or there as the mood strikes. This is gonna be fun!!!

~Peace & Blessings~