|Winter Issue Spring Issue Home Page Summer Issue Autumn Issue Bookstore|
Feeding The Body: Winter Recipes
Winter is a good time for hearty and simple meals. The following is a suggestion a meal which can brighten even the coldest day. Nothing says warmth like a good soup and salad. We used to enjoy this combination after an afternoon of skiing or skating. The meal can be nicely rounded out with servings of your favorite bread or muffins. Corn bread is an excellent choice, especially topped with a little honey (I am not referring to the cook, but he/she deserves a hug for this cold-chaser).
Bean Sprout Salad
Bean sprouts are great since they can be grow easily at home and provide fresh produce for even the most snow-bound. They are also rich in nutrients. But be sure to eat them quickly while they still have a good crunch.
Although the recipe calls for only bean sprouts, substitutions of other sprouts can be made for variety or a mix of sprouts can be used.
Combine the ingredients for the dressing in a container, seal and shake, and let stand for at least several hours and preferably overnight. Letting the mixture stand allows the flavour of the onion and garlic to blend into the oil.
To serve, pour the dressing over the sprouts and toss to coat. This can be done in a container or bag if the salad is taken to a pot-luck. Sprinkle sesame or sunflower seeds over the sprouts and serve.
For a variation on the dressing, substitute one tablespoon of prepared mustard for the soy sauce.
Place potatoes in a large pot, cover with water and bring to a boil. Boil potatoes over a medium to low heat until very soft. Once soft, Remove from heat and mash with fork or potato masher in the pot. If too stiff, add water to mixture to bring to a watery consistency.
Chop one half of a large onion and, if desired, two cloves of garlic.
Heat ½ cup of butter or margarine in a frying pan until melted. Sauté onion and garlic until onion becomes transparent. Sprinkle two tablespoons of flour into the pan and stir until it has mixed well with the butter/margarine.
Transfer contents of the frying pan to the potatoes and quickly bring to a boil over high heat. Stir constantly to avoid burning. Once the mixture begins to thicken, remove from heat and prepare to serve.
Shred about a quarter bowl of your favorite hard cheese (or cheese substitute) in each soup bowl and pour hot potato mixture over the cheese. For an added kick, top soup with a few dashes of hot sauce (tabasco or similar product) and/or three tablespoons of malt vinegar. Mix with spoon to blend potatoes, cheese and toppings. Salt and pepper to taste.
For a holiday season variation on this soup, chop half a green pepper and half a red pepper and sauté them with the onions.
Perhaps something more substantial is in order, the dish below can be added to the above or served with either the soup or salad.
Basic Spicy Bean and Rice Dinner
Serves 4 to 6 Adults
Optional toppings: shredded cheese or non-dairy cheese substitute; cut cilantro or parsley; a few dashes of sauce: tabasco or worcestershire; sesame seeds or slivered almonds.
Prepare sufficient rice for each person and have ready for serving as soon as bean mixture is ready.
The choice of rice can vary as can the mix of beans, thus making a large number of variations on the basic theme of this recipe. I recommend dried beans be used if you wish a cheaper, more environmental friendly meal, but I use canned beans because I have never mastered the art of rehydrating beans. Similarly, the coloured peppers, peas and mushrooms can be replace with other vegetables which may be in season or on hand. This can be a good way to use those last few. When substituting, cut vegetables small enough that the pieces can quickly cook to a crunchy tenderness in ten minutes.
Heat a large frying pan or wok or large pot over high heat until a drop of water beads and dances on it. Add a few tablespoons of olive oil and sauté garlic and onion until onion is transparent. Add sauce and beans. There should be sufficient liquid in the mixture so that it stirs easily with a spoon, otherwise the beans may burn to the bottom of the pot/pan. If liquid content is not sufficient add more sauce or a little water. Cover and simmer this mixture for about twenty minutes. I do not add salt or pepper to most recipes since I feel these are better added at the table to suit personal tastes.
If longer cooking is required or less crunch is desired for vegetables, they can be added to the sauce immediately. Otherwise, add remaining vegetables to the mixture after about ten minutes.
When sauce is ready, serve immediately over a bed of rice. Add toppings, salt and pepper if desired.
Microwave option: Place all ingredients including the rice in a microwave dish of sufficient size and stir. Cook on high for six minutes and 10 minutes on medium setting. Grated cheese can also be mixed in at this stage; it will melt and thicken the mixture.
Feeding The Body: Winter Recipes by Keith C. Heidorn, PhD . ©2001, All Rights Reserved.
I have recently added many of my lifetime collection of photographs and art works to an on-line shop where you can purchase notecards, posters, and greeting cards, etc. of my best images.