Today we got our new project! Here are the guidelines:
1. It should be centered around one fruit or veggie in season
2. It should include an interesting or novel flavor combo (at least 2-5 flavors)
3. We should transform at least one ingredient into a different texture
4. We will probably be using a gel technique
Flavors that suppress each other: sweet/bitter, salty/bitter, sweet/sour,
Thicker products taste and smell less intense
Sweet ideas: berries, apples, raisins, honey, sweet potatoes, beets, sweet peppers, peas, carrots, caramelized onions, beans, tomatoes,
Salty ideas: capers, olives, prosciutto, cheese, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce,
Spicy: cayenne, chilis, peppers, siracha, paprika, chili paste
beet and gruyere bechamele sauce (butter, flour, milk, gruyere, fresh squeezed beet juice) with battered fried or wrapped in prosciutto tofu balls (tofu, olive oil, almond butter, paprika, parsley, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper, beet pulp, cinnamon) and a beet green relish with balsamic and dried cranberries...
beet gruyere bechamele with fresh cod and a crispy honey mustard almond crust
beet potato pancake (grated sweet potato, beet, onion, dill) with steak and bleu cheese dressing
beet meat balls with pear glaze
rosemary, beet, lemon, cashew cheesecake
cashew and beet cheesecake (soaked cashews, milk, lemon juice, honey, coconut butter, roasted beets,) with apricot glaze
red pepper coulis with olives stuffed with feta and basil and a pesto oil/gel
caramelized ham with pear and white bean puree with kale
pear gel/jam with Asian turkey meatballs
thinly sliced pears filled with spinach bechamele
sweet pear bean paste in a pastry with sesame seeds
honey balsamic glazed brussel sprouts with crispy bacon and citrus tarragon aioli
brussel sprout ravioli stuffed with squash carrot cinnamon spice puree with a beet, gruyere cream sauce
squash ketchup on toasted bread or with fried potatoes
creamy squash with spinach rolled in crispy pastry (phyllo) with soy sauce glaze
squash sweet buns filled with Asian glazed pork
squash balls: pureed squash with cinnamon, whole wheat flour, almond milk, served with chocolate sauce, nuts
squash omelet roll: omelet spread with a squash avocado paste topped with a spicy tomato salsa or Asian sauce: soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil, honey, green onions, corn starch
apple sausage bread with toasted walnuts and parsley topped with guac/egg/bbq sauce?
burnt eggplant sauce with tahini
Aronia berry zabaglione
Today I made brussel sprout ravioli with acorn squash and carrot filling, topped with chevre and walnuts.
For the ravioli: I boiled some brussel sprouts, let them cool a bit, blended them in the food processor, then mixed them with some egg, whole wheat flour, and salt until it formed a dough. I let the dough sit covered for a bit before rolling it out into ravioli squares and filling them.
For the filling: I baked the squash and boiled the carrots until soft, then I blended them together into a thick paste.
Here's how they turned out:
It was good! I didn't have a rolling pin, so the dough was a bit thick, but when I thinned it out, it was really good. I didn't even have to add any sweetener and the filling was deliciously sweet. Next time, I might add some more spices (cinnamon, nutmeg) for flavor. The chevre and walnuts went really well on top. I would toast the walnuts, I just didn't have time. Also, I'm thinking it would taste great with some sort of tart/tangy sauce on top. Maybe a cranberry relish of some sort...
Today, I made an omelet with squash carrot filling, paprika, and cilantro. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either. I think the sweetness of the filling overpowered everything else, and I didn't have enough salt. It was interesting, though.
I also tried making a beet cheesecake: soaked cashews, boiled beets, almond milk, coconut butter, lemon juice, rosemary, honey, vanilla, chilled:
I also made a beet juice, honey, balsamic and rosemary glaze with aronia berries. It was actually delicious:
Together, I actually thought they tasted pretty great:
My roommate didn't like this one, but I think it's because she doesn't like beets. You can't please everyone. I'm debating whether or not to take this one further, because I think it's delicious...
I redid the cheesecake and made them into beet balls sort of like truffles, but not. They were a lot better received this way. Even my friend who doesn't like beets said she liked it (I didn't tell her it was beets, though :)
I added some flour to make them thicker.
I dipped them in chocolate, chocolate and coconut, and just coconut. Strangely, beets and coconut and chocolate seem to go great together...
I also made bbq Portobello for dinner with an apple bbq sauce and cauliflower puree. It was fantastic! I made the bbq sauce a little too spicy, but that can easily be fixed.
Here's the bbq apple sauce:
I made it with tomato paste, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, apple cider vinegar, mustard, homemade apple sauce, paprika, chipotle powder, cayenne, and pepper.
Here is the apple sauce:
For this, I simply boiled the apples down with some brown sugar and some rose water (I don't know why, I just wanted to see how it would taste). I didn't add any spices because I was adding it to the bbq sauce. It still tastes good on its own though.
Here is the sautéed kale with apple bbq sauce:
Here is my Portobello mushroom marinated in soy sauce, garlic, ginger, pepper, and some more apple sauce for sweetness:
And here is the final dish with the cauliflower puree on top (cauliflower with lemon juice, salt, pepper, and some cayenne) to balance the spice and sweet of the bbq.
Next idea: onion, carrot, mushrooms, hickory root, tempeh stir-fried in a soy glaze (soy sauce, garlic, ginger, honey, corn starch). Make into meatballs with egg and flour mix. Fry, and serve with a sweet aronia berry and pear jam: lemon juice, pears, aronia berries, sugar, and possibly ginger.
Foods high in calcium for possible gels: kale, turnips, yogurt
Tomorrow, I'm going to use up my brussel sprout ravioli, filled with squash, carrot, and chevre. This time, the chevre will be in the filling, I think I might fry the ravioli to give them a crispy skin, and then I'm making a few sauces: cilantro pesto (cilantro, lemon, salt, pepper, garlic, tofu pureed),
Roasted root veggies: beets, turnip, carrots with a mustard tarragon sauce (yogurt, mustard, tarragon, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar) and kale
tempeh meatballs with dill yogurt sauce
apples + dill?
Today, I made Asian tempeh balls: onions, carrots, mushrooms, hickory root, tempeh stir-fried with soy sauce, ginger, honey, mustard and garlic sauce thickened with corn starch. I added egg and flour to this mixture to make them into balls and fried them.
Here are the tempeh balls (and a tempeh burger):
To go with it, I made a homemade pear and aronia berry jam. I tried to use the peel and core of the pear to make my own pectin, but the jam didn't get as thick as I wanted, so I'm not quite sure if that worked. It tastes great, though--it didn't even need any added sugar.
Here is the jam early on as the pear and aronia berries are cooking down:
Here is the jam after it has cooked down and thickened a bit:
In the jar:
I also did the brussel sprout ravioli again. This time, I added chevre to the squash, carrot filling. I tried them both boiled and fried to a crisp.
Here they are after being boiled:
Here they are after being fried:
Here's what the inside looks like:
The fried ones definitely tasted better, but then, what doesn't taste better fried?
For a sauce to go with, I tried a few options. First, I made a cilantro tofu sauce: tofu, fresh cilantro, lemon, garlic, salt, and pepper blended to a thick cream:
Here they are together on a spoon:
It tasted good, but I don't think the sauce had enough flavor. When you only get one spoonful, I feel like you should pack as much flavor into that spoon as possible, and this sauce just wasn't doing it for me. I liked the creamy texture, though.
Here, I added a toasted walnut, which helped with the flavor and added some crunch:
Then I decided to try a tempeh ball with the tofu sauce:
Again, it wasn't bad, but it wasn't great.
Here is the tempeh ball with the pear aronia jam:
Now this was good. The Asian flavors and the sweetness and tartness of the jam went well together.
Here, I tried the ravioli with some yogurt and dill:
This was better than the tofu sauce because the yogurt gave it a nice tang.
Next, I tried it with mustard and tarragon:
The mustard was too overpowering.
Finally, I tried yogurt and tarragon, just so I'd covered all the bases:
Bleh. This one was a definite NO WAY.
New idea: kale chip, bbq marinated mushroom (thyme, rosemary, garlic, soy sauce, apple cider vinegar, green onion, worsteshire sauce), pear/aronia sweet bean paste (pear aronia jam, cannellini beans, ginger)
Tonight I figured out what I'm going to make!
First, I made kale chips: olive oil and salt baked at 350 for about 10 mins until crispy:
Then, I roasted some eggplant with my bbq sauce from before: tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, mustard, soy sauce, paprika, chipotle powder, cayenne, apple sauce until very tender:
I tried making a cannellini bean and pear jam sauce:
And I tried them all together:
The sauce was good on its own, but it didn't go with the bbq. So, I marinated some tofu in soy sauce, worsteshire, mustard, and rosemary and fried them to crispy. Then, I turned the roasted eggplant into a pasty sauce and tried these together:
Bingo! It's fantastic. I couldn't stop eating, so this is my final dish.