Wednesday, March 4, 2009

January 23

Many apologies for the delayed posting. Here's what we whipped up for sixteen hungry students on January 23rd. We started with a Shredded beet salad with tahini dressing, then some Potato soup with dumplings and a wild rice vegetable bake. We rounded it all off with homemade granola bars using Agora's own recipe (it's a keeper!). The rest of the recipes came from Simply in Season (World Community Cookbooks). The tahini dressing was as easy as it gets and very tasty, I would put it on other veggies too. To be honest, I'm not sure if I'd use the dumpling recipe again but you can find others at Bon appetite!

Shredded Beet Salad

(from Simply in Season, tripled to serve 12)


6 cups beets (cooked, peeled and shredded)

1 ½ cups fresh parsley (chopped)

¼ cup olive oil

1/3 cup lemon juice

1/3 cup onion (finely chopped)

3 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon salt

Pepper to taste

3 cups carrots (shredded)

12 hard boiled eggs (sliced)

1 cup fresh parsley (chopped; optional)


Combine everything except beets in a large bowl and gently mix. Garnish with eggs and parsley and serve with tahini dressing.

Tahini Dressing

(doubled from Simply in Season)

1 cup tahini

1 cup vegetable oil

½ cup lemon juice

¼ cup soy sauce or tamari

Water for desired consistency

Add all ingredients to a jar with a tight fitting lid and shake to combine.

Potato Soup with Dumplings

(from Simply in Season, tripled to serve 12)


1/3 cup butter

1 cup onion (chopped)

9 cups potatoes (diced)

6 cups vegetable broth

2 teaspoons salt

½ teaspoon pepper

1 cup celery with leaves (chopped; optional)

1 ½ cup carrots (diced or shredded; optional)

½ teaspoon seasoning such as ground nutmeg, dried marjoram, celery salt, dried dill weed, or paprika

6 cups milk

½ cup flour


1. Melt butter in large saucepan. Add onion. Sauté until translucent

2. Add potatoes, broth, carrots, celery and seasoning. Cover, and cook until vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. For a creamier soup, remove some of the cooked potatoes, puree them and return to saucepan.

3. Mix the milk and flour together until smooth. Add to soup and cook until thickened, stirring constantly.


3 large eggs (beaten)

1/3 cup milk

1 1/2 cup flour


1. Combine together and drop mixture by teaspoonfuls into simmering soup.

2. Simmer 5 more minutes. Serve with fresh parsley and shredded cheese, if desired.

Wild Rice Vegetable Bake

(from Simply in Season, doubled to serve 12-16)


2 cups wild rice

4 cups onion (chopped)

2 cups pearl barley

4 cups each sweet potatoes, winter squash, parsnips (peeled and cut in 1 inch pieces)

2 cups cider or apple juice

6 cups chicken or vegetable broth


1. Rinse rice in cold water and strain. Boil gently in 8 cups water for 10 minutes. Drain.

*Since some of the nutrients from the rice will have dissolved into the boiling water, save it to mix with bouillon powder for broth.
2. Sauté onion in ¼ cup olive oil or butter.
3. Place barley with onions and wild rice in large casserole dish or two 9 x 13 inch baking pans. Stir.

4. Spread cubbed vegetables on top of grains. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

5. Pour cider and broth on top. Cover tightly with foil or lid. Bake at 375F/ 190C for 1 hour or until veggies are tender and most of the liquid is absorbed.


(from Agora; doubled to make 48 for lots to take home!)

* 6 cups quick-cooking oats
* 2 (14 ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
* ¼ cup butter, melted
* 2 cups flaked coconut
* 2 cups sliced almonds
* 2 cups miniature semisweet chocolate chips
* 1 cup sweetened dried cranberries

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 2 9x13 inch pans.

2. In a large bowl, mix together the oats, sweetened condensed milk, butter, coconut, almonds, chocolate chips and cranberries with your hands until well blended. Press flat into the prepared pan.

3. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, depending on how crunchy you want them. Lightly browned just around the edges will give you moist, chewy bars. Let cool for 5 minutes, cut into squares (makes about 48 squares: 4 x 6) then let cool completely before serving.

Note: feel free to play with what kind of nuts and dried fruit you add, depending on what's on hand.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

November 2008 Menu

It's finally here! The menu for our delicious November dinner, including the much anticipated corn bread recipe. All of the recipes come from Simply in Season except the cornbread which is from We chose not to peel most of the veggies since that's more nutritious and less work. Read on, hungry students:

Apple Lentil Salad, Vegetarian Chili, Corn Bread, Upside-down Pear Gingerbread

Apple Lentil Salad
Serves 6-8. We doubled it to serve a crowd.

1 cup lentils
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups water
2 tart apples (cored and diced)
1/4 cup lemon juice or cider vinegar
2 potatoes (cooked, cooled, and chopped)
1 small onion (thinly sliced)
handful fresh or frozen parsley (chopped)

1. Soak lentils in a large amount of hot water for 15 minutes.
2. In large saucepan heat oil. Add salt and curry powder and heat until bubbly. Drain lentils, add to saucepan, and fry briefly.
3. Add the 2 cups water and cook until absorbed (adding more water if needed to cook lentils until tender), about 20 minutes. Drain any excess water. Cool.
4. Combine apples with lemon juice to prevent browning. Add to lentils when cooled.
5. Add remaining ingredients and salt to taste. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Vegetarian Chili

Serves about 12.

2 pounds any combination of dried beans such as pink, pinto, kidney, navy, soy, black or chickpeas
1 cup sweet red pepper (chopped)
1 cup green pepper (chopped)
1 onion (chopped)
3 cloves garlic (minced)
8 cups tomatoes (canned or fresh; chopped)
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon honey or molasses
1 butternut squash (peeled, seeded and shopped into 1/2 in cubes)
1 chipotle or jalepeno pepper (minced, seeds removed)
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin

1. Rinse and soak beans overnight. Drain water. Cook in fresh water until soft, 45 - 60 minutes or longer, depending on the beans used.
*to save time, we used 6 cans of beans and a can of corn
2. In a large soup pot, saute onions, garlic and sweet peppers in a tablespoon of olive oil.
3. Add tomatoes, salt and honey or molasses. Add beans, squash and spices. Simmer for 45 minutes.

Grandmother's Buttermilk Cornbread

Serves 9. We doubled it and it went fast!

  • 1/4 pound butter
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease an 8 inch square pan.
  2. Melt butter in large skillet. Remove from heat and stir in sugar. Quickly add eggs and beat until well blended. Combine buttermilk with baking soda and stir into mixture in pan. Stir in cornmeal, flour, and salt until well blended and few lumps remain. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Upside-Down Pear Gingerbread
Serves 8. We doubled it (who doesn't love desert?).


1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon water
2 ripe pears (peeled, cored and sliced)

1. Combine first four ingredients in an ovenproof, microwaveable casserole dish. Microwave on low until butter melts. Stir.
*We made our syrup on the stove in a small saucepan and poured it into baking dishes.
2. Arrange pear slices on top of syrup.


1 cup flour
1/cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon each ground nutmeg, allspice and salt

1/3 cup butter (softened)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup molasses or honey
1/2 cup buttermilk

1. Combine dry ingredients and set aside.
2. Beat together butter and brown sugar in a mixing bowl until light an fluffy. Add egg and beat another minute.
3. Alternately add molasses and buttermilk with dry ingredients to creamed mixture. Spoon over pears in baking dish. Bake in preheated oven at 350 F/ 180C until toothpick inserted in cake comes out clean, 30-35 minutes. Remove from oven and cool about three minutes. Turn onto a platter. Serve warm or cold with whipped cream if desired.
*We had to bake ours a little longer, it turned out a bit messy on the first try :)