April 17, 2013

at home in the curious city

Over the weekend we went to the Silver Lake Farmer's Market to buy some fresh and local groceries. Monica picked up some plump tomatoes and Junette got some tasty bok choy and bread pudding. Below are two dishes we made with our respective produce.

Angelinos don't mess around when it comes to Mexican food. We know what's good and we know how we like it. When I cook Mexican at home, it mostly involves a lot of cheese and carbs in the form of a quesadilla or burrito. Not the healthiest but damn right delicious. After many guilty and greasy nights I decided to try my hand at cooking a less fatty but still flavorful Mexican food. This is a twist on traditional Mexican rice, substituting rice with farro, a whole grain with lots of nutrients. It is a great side dish, perfect for stuffing in a burrito, or on it's own topped with some fresh avocado and salsa as a light meal. I've also made this recipe with quinoa instead of farro which turned out lighter and fluffier.
3 tomatoes
1 lemon or lime
1 cup farro
1 clove garlic
1 onion
2 sprigs of cilantro
salt/pepper/red pepper flakes to taste
Roughly chop up the onions, garlic, cilantro, and tomatoes. Put in a food processor or blender along with the juice of 1 lemon or lime. Blend until the mixture becomes liquid. There should be 2-2.5 cups of liquid.
This tomato based liquid will be used to cook the farro. If the farro has already been pre-cooked (ie Trader Joes) or soaked overnight then the 2-2.5 cups should be enough liquid to cook the farro for 15-30 min depending on the brand you buy. If you are using raw farro then add 3 cups of water to the tomato based liquid to cook the farro for 60 min. If you'd like to substitute with quinoa the ratio is 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups liquid.

4 heads of bok choy
1 onion
1 carrot
1 stalk of green onion
1 package of oyster mushrooms
low sodium soy sauce (to taste)
Hoisin sauce (preferably oyster sauce) (also to taste)
1 package of pan fry-able noodles (I wanted the thin ones you see in yakisoba, but only found fat udon-type ones)

1. Wash and chop up your bok choy. Separate the leafy parts from the stem. You will want to cook them separately since the leafy part will cook much faster. Chop the other vegetables. I chose to cut the onions and carrots more in thin slices, but whatever you desire.

2. Start cooking over a medium flame in a nonstick pan. Start with the bok choy and add soy sauce and Hoisin sauce to taste. Use approximately a 2 to 1 ratio of soy sauce to Hoisin sauce. [A note about the Hoisin sauce. I can't remember why I have Hoisin sauce in my kitchen, but when I was at the market, I swore that the Hoisin sauce was Oyster sauce. When I opening my cabinet, I was disappointed to find Hoisin sauce. Wah wah. So, I said whatever and used Hoisin sauce, and it was still tasty.] Then add the other vegetables and season to taste. Then add the mushrooms and the leafy parts of the bok choy, which will cook in just a few minutes.

3. Add the noodles. I used prepackaged noodles from the Korean market. They came in a pack of 3, and I used all the noodles. Though they look like udon noodles, I made sure to buy the ones that indicated that they were for stir-frying. Slowly let the noodles break apart, all the while stirring. Add the green onions on top at the very last minute.

It's pretty easy and quick, and it's the first time I really cooked anything just by taste. You can't go wrong here!

1 comment:

  1. but junette -- what did you make with the bread pudding????