It seems like I have been posting about food a lot lately. Of course, being in a new culture with completely new-to-us cuisine, that is bound to happen.
For this week’s 10 in 10 post, I am sharing ten of the “real food” experiments we have tried lately. I’m trying to get us back on track with eating less processed food, so that means a lot of Pinterest browsing (of course!) and testing out funky ideas.
Some of them have been yummy successes. Others were huge fails.
1. Black Eyed Pea Dip
I thought I had grabbed a bag of chickpeas at the store to make hummus, but when I got home I found that I had bought black eyed peas.
I had no idea what to do with black eyed peas.
You’ll have to forgive me. I am not a Southern gal and these strange beans have never been a part of my life – until now.
Cooked, mashed, and mixed with some sour cream, salsa, and cheese – this makes a mean baked bean dip.
2. Fermented Daikon Radish
We’ve fermented pickles, peppers, eggs, and just about everything else you could think of, so why not radish?
Crispy, crunchy, and tangy. They go great with a salad or on a relish tray.
3. Mint Blackberry Syrup
Take 3 cups of frozen blackberries, 1/4 cup of mint leaves, and 1/4 cup of Agave syrup and bring to a boil on the stove. Cook down for 8 minutes.
Strain out all the seeds and leaves with a mesh strainer. (The picture above is not strained – we ate the seeds/leaves too it was so yummy)
You now have a homemade blackberry mint syrup that is amazing on yogurt and waffles. Make your own soda by adding the syrup to club soda or kombucha!
4. Flavored Waters
These are hugely popular on Pinterest right now. My kids love coming up with new combinations of flavors to try. We shared our two favorites over at Natural Family Today recently.
5. Homemade Green Chorizo
One thing we miss from back home – chorizo.
You can’t find it here – not even at the commissary. So we decided to make our own.
I had Anaheim peppers and raw pumpkin seeds already so we decided to make our chorizo green.
It’s a great breakfast sausage that goes good with eggs in burritos.
On one of our date nights, Jay and I walked for a long time trying to decide where to eat. Sometimes variety causes panic for indecisive people like us.
We finally just threw our hands up and went into the nearest restaurant, which happened to be “Little India in Seoul“.
We had never had Indian food before (not authentic Indian food). We fell in love with the lamb masala and especially the garlic naan.
Since then naan has been recreated in our home many times with the help of Sanjay.
7. Grain-free Cauliflower Tortillas
They looked so yummy and so simple to make! I found the picture on Pinterest and poured over the instructions at Slim Palate.
Paleo tortillas made from cauliflower?
Oh gosh – this was such a nauseating mess! Raven and I tried over and over to get these suckers to stick together and actually hold something inside of them.
No – just no. It was a pain in the rear.
8. Greek Hummus
This experiment just came to me.
I love hummus. I love Greek flavors.
Why not combine the two and make a Greek flavored hummus?
I tell ya – I’m just a genius sometimes. And I’ll share my genius with you:
- 2-3 cups of chickpeas (cooked)
- 1 cup sun dried tomatoes
- 4 oz crumbled feta cheese
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp minced garlic (optional)
- 3 TB pureed cucumber (peel, chop, puree in blender)
- 1-2 TB plain yogurt
- Olive oil to moisten
- salt, pepper to taste
Run your tomatoes through a processor until they are really finely chopped. Mash the chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans), mixing in the yogurt, cucumber, and seasonings gradually. You can do this in a mixer or by hand. Add olive oil or more yogurt to moisten the mixture to your liking. Add tomatoes and feta cheese and stir with a spoon. Serve chilled with veggies, bread, chips, crackers, or anything you like to dip into hummus!
9. Baked Oatmeal
This one wasn’t exactly a fail. My kids really liked eating the oatmeal “muffins” warm from the oven. But I made a giant batch, thinking they would go well for hubby’s breakfasts.
Well, they really didn’t have much flavor when they got cold. I ended up warming them up and eating them myself – slowly.
Sunday Baker has a great recipe for what I’m talking about. Next time I think I need to make a smaller batch and add more fruit and flavor. Hmm – maybe add my blackberry mint syrup. . .
10. Quinoa Potato Salad
Another crazy idea I had over the weekend. We haven’t had potato salad in forever. It’s a comfort food from my childhood. Summers were not complete without a family picnic that included homemade potato salad.
I made my potato salad recipe more “real” by using unskinned red potatoes, real mayonnaise (I’m learning to make my own healthier version), and adding in quinoa to give it a “kick”. Oh – and I used stone-ground mustard instead of the yellow stuff.
This recipe isn’t perfected quite yet, but the salad we had this weekend was amazing.
Do you like to tweak recipes and experiment? What have you concocted lately?