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hello to visitors from around the world!

October 1, 2012

Since February 2012, these recipes have had visitors from:

Algeria, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Bermuda, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Fiji, Finland, France, French Guiana, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guam, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Lithuania, Macedonia, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Martinique, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Palestine, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Réunion, Romania, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, United States, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Virgin Islands.

(121 countries out of 206!)

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I am so happy to see you here! Don’t be shy. Please leave a comment! Teach me how your family makes something, or share what you think about a recipe you tried!

I’d love to see a community of people sharing their experiences and preferences so we can all learn more!

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sesame cookies

July 2, 2015

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup well-stirred tahini
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/3 cup sesame seeds (for rolling)

Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl.

Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl until pale and fluffy, then beat in tahini and vanilla. Add flour mixture until a crumbly dough forms. Chill dough until firm, at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Stir together sesame seeds. Roll dough into 1-inch balls, then roll balls 1 at a time in seeds to coat and arrange 2 inches apart on greased or lined baking sheets. Bake until cookies are puffed and starting to crack, 12 to 15 minutes total. Cool on sheets 10 minutes (cookies will be very fragile when hot), then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

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modified from epicurious

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not my favorite cookie. crumbly, almost sandy texture. not exactly sweet, not exactly savory. maybe the mistake is with me – i used a little buckwheat flour and sometimes that causes a sandy texture. i usually throw a pinch in to any cookie i make, though – so i think it’s the tahini and lack of egg that causes a sandy texture.

it’s not sandy like shortbread. it’s less solid. it falls to dust when you dunk it in milk. not in a crumbly, warm way. in a silty way.

it is nice having a cookie recipe that only uses a half-cup of sugar. however, i don’t see myself revisiting this recipe unless someone asks for a low-ish sugar cookie.

tahini is amazing. i was hoping to love these cookies. i’ll have to stick to tahini almond date bites, goddess dressing, and baba ghanouj for my next sesame craving.

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chicken salad with spinach, apple, and dill

May 22, 2015

breast meat of 1 whole roasted chicken (stuffed with half a lemon, fresh oregano, and a few cloves of garlic), shredded with 2 forks
1 small package organic dill
1 sour green apple, like granny smith
1 pinch crumbled feta (optional)
1 spoonful sliced kalamata olives (optional)
minced raw garlic and/or minced scallions or onions, to taste
washed raw spinach leaves, torn into small pieces

salt to taste

combine all.

add a bit of mayo, then slowly add enough plain (unsweetened!) yogurt to lightly coat, and lemon or apple cider vinegar to taste
if dry, add a splash of vegetable stock or chicken broth.

chicken salad with spinach, green apple, and dill

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best-ever 15-minute baked beans (vegan and non-vegan versions)

May 20, 2015

really easy, fast, delicious way to switch up your bean game. you can take the finished beans and bake them in a low oven for an hour, but i think they’re just fine like this for a quick lunch. don’t let society pressure you into adding bacon and sugar. caramelized onions add plenty of sweetness.

VEGAN

saute onion in coconut oil (or oil of your choice)

when caramelized, add cooked (or canned) pinto beans, tomato sauce, molasses, vegetable stock, and minced roasted garlic cloves.

season with mustard, garlic and onion powder, clove, thyme, and smoked paprika or smoked salt if you have it. add veg worcestershire sauce if you like it.

simmer on low for 10 minutes.

add brown sugar or maple syrup if you like it sweet, or just serve as is.

NON-VEGAN

if you like your beans bacony, start by frying a few strips of bacon, then remove the bacon, crumble it onto a plate, and set it aside. fry onions in the bacon grease.

otherwise (this is my favorite,) just start by sauteeing onion in chicken schmaltz (or oil of your choice)

when caramelized, add cooked (or canned) pinto beans, tomato sauce, molasses, a little vegetable or chicken stock, and minced roasted garlic cloves.

season with mustard, garlic and onion powder, clove, a pinch of thyme, and smoked paprika or smoked salt if you have it. add worcestershire sauce if you like it. don’t forget salt and black pepper.

simmer on low for 10 minutes.

add brown sugar or maple syrup if you like it sweet, or just serve as is.

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irish soda bread

February 17, 2015

This adaptation of Rosie’s Irish soda bread is perfect for a snow day. Much faster than a yeast bread – no waiting for it to rise!

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3 1⁄2 cups flour
1/4 – 1⁄2 cup sugar (optional; only use if you want this to be a dessert)
1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups of sour cream, plain kefir or yogurt, buttermilk, or anything that’s creamy and tangy
2 eggs
1 tablespoon caraway seeds (optional)
3⁄4 cup raisins

preheat oven to 350.

mix flour, sugar, baking soda and powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl.

separately, in another bowl, mix eggs and sour cream/kefir/etc.

combine both, and knead with caraway seeds and raisins.

dough will be so sticky you’ll think you did something wrong.

transfer dough into a dutch oven, a springform pan, a 9″ round casserole dish, or if all else fails, a cookie sheet. (i did, and it flattened out a bit in the oven but was still delicious!)

flour your hands and pat top (and sides, if on a cookie sheet) of loaf until it is no longer sticky.

bake for ~55 minutes

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adapted from rosie’s irish soda bread

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The combination of caraway seeds and raisins is surprisingly amazing. This is so fast and painless for bread, and a great way to use the endless sour kefir that is always in my fridge! The recipe called for 1/2 c sugar, but I wouldn’t use that much again. It was way too sweet for me. Wonderful recipe otherwise! It’s dense and satisfying.

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oven-poached (shirred) eggs

February 9, 2015

I recommend these simple, no-fail eggs (or oefs en cocotte, the heavy cream version). The only downside is cleaning out the muffin tin.

They’re not at all greasy or chewy. This method would be great for making eggs for a large group.

If you need to surprise someone with breakfast on valentine’s day and need something you can’t possibly mess up, this is a good one. Serve with grits or toast if you like, but eggs are never limited to breakfast. They’re great on a bed of greens for lunch, or with mustard and crackers for a snack, or on top of your stir-fry or steak.

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attempt one

preheat oven to 350
pour a little grease into a muffin tin
add a bit of boiling water into each
crack an egg into indentation
sprinkle a little salt and pepper on each egg
if you like, add herbs or cheese

cook 12 minutes if you like over medium – more if you like eggs over hard; less if you like eggs over easy
(your oven may vary! watch them carefully)

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adapted from epicurious

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crispy vegan kung pao tofu

January 22, 2015

This hit the spot. It tastes like something from an Americanized Chinese restaurant – sweet, crunchy, salty, and satisfying. I definitely recommend this one. If you can get past frying the tofu, the sauce takes three minutes to cook up, and your house will smell great.

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vegetable or peanut oil for frying or baking
1/8 cup plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch, divided
1/8 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
Kosher salt
1/4 cup cold water
1 pound extra-firm tofu, cut into 3/4-inch cubes, pressed with something heavy to release moisture, and ideally patted dry to avoid the oil spitting
1/4 cup water or vegetable stock
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon Sichuan broad bean chili paste (I used miso and chili-garlic paste)
1 tablespoon Chinkiang vinegar (I used rice wine vinegar)
2 teaspoons sugar (optional)
3 scallions, whites finely minced, and greens finely sliced, reserved separately
3 cloves minced garlic (about 1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoons sichuan peppercorns, divided
12 hot Chinese dry chili peppers (I used 6)
2 small leeks, white and light green parts only, cut into 1/4-inch slices (about 1/2 cup total) (I left these out and it was still great)
2 ribs celery, split in half lengthwise and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
1 long green Chinese hot pepper, stemmed and seeded, cut into 3/4-inch squares (I omitted this)
1/2 cup roasted peanuts
Cooked white rice, for serving
Procedures

1
Heat oil in a wok to 350°F. (You can also bake the tofu if you prefer! If baking it, move to step 3.) Whisk together cornstarch, flour, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Add water and whisk until a smooth batter is formed, adding up to 2 tablespoons additional water if batter is too thick. It should have the consistency of thin paint and fall off of the whisk in thin ribbons that instantly disappear as they hit the surface of the batter in the bowl.

2
Add tofu and carefully turn to coat. Working one at a time, lift one piece and allow excess batter to drip off. Carefully lower into hot oil. Repeat with remaining tofu until wok is full. Fry, using a metal spider or slotted spatula to rotate and agitate pieces as they cook until evenly pale golden and crisp all over, about 6 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Repeat until all tofu is fried. Carefully pour oil out of wok.

3
Combine stock, soy sauce, bean paste, vinegar, sugar, and remaining 2 teaspoons corn starch in a small bowl. Set aside. Combine scallion whites, garlic, and ginger in a second small bowl. Set aside. Coarsely grind half of peppercorns in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder.

4
Set a fine mesh strainer over a heatproof bowl or saucepan. Return 1/4 cup oil to wok and heat over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add remaining half of peppercorns and chilies and cook, stirring, for 5 seconds. Immediately drain through fine mesh strainer. Pick out chilies and set aside. Discard cooked peppercorns

5
Return infused oil to the wok and heat over high heat until lightly smoking. Add leeks, celery, and long pepper and cook, stirring and tossing, until vegetables are lightly charred and tender-crisp, about 1 1/2 minutes. Clear a space in the center of the wok and add the scallion/ginger/garlic mixture. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add peanuts, dried chilies, and drained tofu. Stir sauce mixture and add to wok. Cook, tossing and folding ingredients together until tofu is fully coated. Add scallion greens and ground peppercorns and toss to combine. Serve immediately with white rice.

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adapted from serious eats

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soup joumou (haitian pumpkin soup)

January 19, 2015

two versions: VEGAN and MEATY!

This Haitian pumpkin soup looks amazing for warming up in January. & in fact, this soup is traditionally eaten on the New Year to celebrate Haitian independence. There is a great read about why Haitians celebrate their independence with this pumpkin soup on soupsong (or a short version here if you like!)

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VEGAN VERSION!:

2 lbs pumpkin
one small cabbage, diced; or one package of extra-firm tofu, cut into chunks; or one package of tempeh, cut into chunks; or 1 eggplant, diced; or anything that you like to eat that can be marinated

marinade:
2 limes
1 onion
4 cloves garlic
1 tsp thyme
2 scallions
salt and pepper
soup:
1 habanero, seeded (less if you don’t like spicy food)
2 whole cloves, or a pinch of clove powder
veggie stock, or bouillon cube and water

any combination of:
cabbage
celery
carrots
potatoes
turnips
bell pepper
a few sprigs of parsley
malanga
1/4 lb vermicelli or other small pasta, broken up
pat of margarine or drizzle of oil

roast about 2 pounds of pumpkin, or cut up and boil in stockpot.
smash or puree once cooked.

marinate the meat substitute or vegetable of your choice in a paste of onion, shallot, fresh garlic and/or garlic powder, thyme, scallions, salt, and black pepper (green peppercorns if you have them, too.. but it’s not necessary.) marinate between an hour and a day.

bring water to a boil in a soup pot. add the pumpkin, habanero, and clove powder. if you are using eggplant or cabbage or some other firm veggie, add it now. simmer for a half-hour or so. add hard vegetables. cook until soft. if marinating something delicate like tofu, add now, along with vermicelli, parsley, and margarine, and cook until pasta is soft.

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MEATY VERSION!:

2 lbs pumpkin
1lb beef stew meat

marinade:
2 limes
1 onion
4 cloves garlic
1 tsp thyme
2 scallions
salt and pepper

soup:
1 habanero, seeded (less if you don’t like spicy food)
2 whole cloves, or a pinch of clove powder
stock, broth, or bouillon cube and water

any combination of:
cabbage, celery, carrots, potatoes, turnips, bell pepper, a few sprigs of parsley, malanga, 1/4 lb vermicelli or other small pasta, broken up, and a pat of butter or margarine

roast about 2 pounds of pumpkin, or cut up and boil in stockpot.
smash or puree once cooked.

take a pound of beef stew meat, and squeeze half a lime over the meat. rub the other half of the lime on the meat. rinse meat. marinate it in a paste of onion, shallot, fresh garlic and/or garlic powder, thyme, scallions, salt, and black pepper (green peppercorns if you have them, too.. but it’s not necessary.) marinate between an hour and a day.

bring water to a boil in a soup pot. add the pumpkin, beef, habanero, and clove powder. simmer for an hour or two. add hard vegetables. cook until soft. add vermicelli, parsley, and butter, and cook until pasta is soft.

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adapted from love for haitian food, soupsong, and axis of logic by friedsig

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