Archive for May, 2009


The original recipe for this yummy cake called for buttermilk, which is very disagreeable with my digestion. I subbed plain soy yogurt instead, measure for measure, and this cake was a real winner.

Raspberry cake

1 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 stick margarine, softened

2/3 cup plus 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar, divided

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 large egg

1/2 cup plain soy yogurt

1 cup fresh raspberries

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F, rack in the middle. Grase and flour a 9″ round cake pan.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Beat margarine and 2/3 cup sugar with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale an fluffy, about 2 minutes. Then beat in vanilla; add the egg and beat well.

At low speed, mix in flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with yogurt, beginning and ending with the flour, and mixing until just combined.

Spoon batter into cake pan, smoothing top. Scatter raspberries evenly over the top and sprinkle with remaining 1 1/2 tablespoon sugar.

Bake until cake is golden and a wooden toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, 25-30 minutes. Cool in pan 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack and cool to warm. Invert onto a plate. Serves 6.

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This week’s edition of the Presto Pasta Nights Roundup (best darned pasta blogfest in the universe) is being hosted by ImAFoodBlog, and what finer pasta recipes you’ll never find anywhere. Please go check it out, and bring your appetite.

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From my friend Jerry comes this outstanding salad. I’m a big fan of Thai food, although I’m not in love with triple-star heat. So I toned this down a little, and it is reflected in the amounts of chili paste and chiles that I used in this recipe. I couldn’t find any kaffir lime leaves, or lemongrass, so this version reflects that. The flavors of this salad hit all the right tastebuds on our palates; save room for seconds.

Chicken salad, Thai style

For the chicken:

4 roasted chicken breasts, shredded

1/2 teaspoon chopped ginger

juice of two limes

1/3 teaspoon chili paste

2 shallots, minced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 teaspoon fish sauce

Mix all the dressing ingredients. Toss the shredded chicken with the dressing.

For the salad base:

1 tablespoon fish sauce

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1/4 cup lime juice

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 jalapeno pepper, minced

1 bunch watercress, trimmed

8 Napa cabbage leaves cut in a chiffonade

16 cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half

1 cup blanched green beans, cut into 1″ lengths

1/2 bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped

1/2 bunch mint, leaves trimmed and chiffonaded

1/2 cup roasted peanuts or cashews (non-salted), chopped

Mix the fish sauce through to the jalapeno in a jar. Shake well to dissolve sugar. Store in the refrigerator overnight if you so desire so that the flavors come together. (You can also omit that step.)

Mix together the watercress through the mint in a large bowl. Toss with the dressing.

To serve: Divide the vegetables mixture among 4 plates. Add the chicken on top of the vegetables. Sprinkle with chopped nuts. Makes 8 servings.

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Kudos to Chef John of Foodwishes.com blog, and his celebration of spring with this pasta recipe. I made a nondairy modification with soy parmesan, and I also used a little less oil than called for. Oh, and one less jalapeno. Make this dish and feel the green!

I’m including the list of ingredients below, then watch Chef John’s enjoyable video instructions on how to put it all together.

Pasta primavera

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons

1 bunch green onions, chopped

1 large leek, chopped, washed thoroughly

1 jalapeno, diced

1 bunch basil

3 cups chicken or vegetable broth

2 cloves garlic

2 green zucchini, diced

1/2 cup freshly shucked peas

1 cup sugar snap peas, chopped

1 bunch asparagus, stalks diced, tips left whole

1/2 cup soy parmesan

salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1 pound fettuccine

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This recipe comes from my friend Ida. I have included the nondairy adaptations, and I also used less creamer than originally called for. The taste of the artichokes comes through loud and clear. Delicious. Although it’s a warm soup, it has spring written all over it.

Cream of artichoke soup

3 tablespoons margarine
4 tablespoons minced shallots
1 1/2 tablespoons flour
3 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
3 cans of artichoke quarters in water (drained), chopped
1/4 cup nondairy creamer
Salt and Pepper

Melt margarine in a skillet over medium heat, allowing it to brown just lightly. Add shallots and saute briefly until softened. Stir in flour and cook 2 to 3 minutes.

Heat stock or chicken broth in a 2 qt. saucepan. Add flour mixture, stirring constantly. Cook over medium heat until slightly thickened, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Add the chopped artichokes to thickened chicken stock, and then the creamer. Blend thoroughly with an immersion blender. Season with salt and pepper. Makes 8 servings.

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One of my favorite daily-read blogs is The Pioneer Woman, and one of this blogger’s favorite salad recipes is this one. So why not try it? I did, and it was everything she said it would be, and more. Delicious and addictive. Colorful and filling. Easy to make, easy to clean up. Did I say addicting? Try it, you’ll like it. Disclaimer: it makes a boatload – great dish for a crowd. Make sure you prepare it in your largest bowl you can find.

Asian noodle salad


1 16-ounce package linguine noodles, cooked, rinsed, cooled

1/2 – 1 head sliced napa cabbage

1/2 to 1 head sliced purple cabbage

1/2 to 1 bag baby spinach

1 red bell pepper, sliced thin

1 orange bell pepper, sliced thin

1 yellow bell pepper, sliced thin

1 small bag mung bean sprouts

3 sliced scallions

3 peeled sliced cucumbers

up to one bunch chopped fresh cilantro

1 can whole cashews, lightly toasted on skillet


juice of 1 lime

8 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons sesame oil

8 tablespoons soy sauce

1/3 cup brown sugar

2 tablespoons fresh ginger, chopped

2 cloves chopped garlic

1 jalapeno pepper, chopped (recipe called for 2, I only used 1)

more chopped cilantro

Mix together salad ingredients. Whisk together dressing ingredients and pour over salad. Mix with tongs or hands and serve.

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I made this recipe the cheater’s way, using store-bought refried beans and enchilada sauce. It’s another one of those quick and easy meals that come together almost effortlessly and are perfect for making when you come home from work and wanna get something good together. The cheese on top is soy cheese (a triple combo package that is already shredded, from Trader Joes’). I made this in a smaller baking dish than called for, therefore using smaller proportions than called for. Same very tasty results, though.

Enchilada casserole

1/4 cup chicken broth

3/4 cup chopped onion

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 pound ground raw turkey breast

1 can refried beans

1 large can enchilada sauce (I used mild)

8 six-inch corn tortillas

2 cups shredded soy cheese, cheddar preferable

Heat chicken broth in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently, til tender. Add turkey, and cook over medium-high heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Add the refried beans and 1/2 cup enchilada sauce; reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Spread 1/4 – 1/2 cup enchilada sauce in bottom of 13×9″ baking dish (I used 10×7″). Dredge both sides of 6 tortillas (I used 4) in sauce; then arrange tortillas, overlapping, in the baking dish. Top with half of bean mixture and 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce, and sprinkle with half of the cheese. Brush both side of the remaining tortillas with enchilada sauce, and arrange tortillas, overlapping over the cheese. Top with remaining bean mixture, 1/4 cup enchilada sauce, and remaining cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes or until bubbly. Makes 9 servings. Tastes even better the day after!


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