Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Anyone Can Cook!

"Anyone can cook"...the title of Chef Auguste Gusteau's cookbook in the Disney epic "Ratatouille". Cute movie, minus the rats in the kitchen. It is true, anyone CAN cook. Hopefully I am sharing recipes you feel are easy and duplicatable in your kitchen. You know I don't make elaborate meals all of the time, especially during the week. We were busy last week with Spring activities, choir concerts, ballet performances. A few of the meals we had were really good, pretty healthy and simple to "whip up". Lots of rice and beans with some vegetables thrown in. With Pete's help, David made Crispy Black Bean Tacos. I think we also ate a lot of eggs. "Fry and Egg!", That was always one of my Mom's famous lines when there seemed to be nothing in the house to eat. Many people don't have much time after work or are racing to different activities to cook anything complicated. It pays to have a few "go to" meals that can be made in a flash, something you can make when it seems like you have no food in your refrigerator, only condiments. Believe me, I too stare at the open fridge, hoping something will jump out at me, and my kids claim they've been forced to eat "condiment sandwiches" when they don't see anything.

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This first recipe comes from Mark Bittman of the NY Times. He recreates the chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten's fried rice, topped with crisp ginger and a fried egg. We LOVED it. I Didn't have any leeks, so I used some shredded cabbage and onion...worked well. Here's a video of Mark making the dish!
Ginger Fried Rice

peanut oil (or whatever light oil you have)

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons minced ginger


2 cups thinly sliced leeks, white and light green parts only, rinsed and dried

4 cups day-old cooked rice, preferably jasmine, at room temperature

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons sesame oil

4 teaspoons soy sauce.

1. In a large skillet, heat 1/4 cup oil over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp and brown. With a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels and salt lightly.

2. Reduce heat under skillet to medium-low and add 2 tablespoons oil and leeks. Cook about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until very tender but not browned. Season lightly with salt.

3. Raise heat to medium and add rice. Cook, stirring well, until heated through. Season to taste with salt.

4. In a nonstick skillet, fry eggs in remaining oil, sunny-side-up, until edges are set but yolk is still runny.

5. Divide rice among four dishes. Top each with an egg and drizzle with 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil and 1 teaspoon soy sauce. Sprinkle crisped garlic and ginger over everything and serve.

Yield: 4 servings.

This next recipe was ultra simple with just a few ingredients.

Haydari with Carrots (Spread to serve with pita bread...or any crusty bread)


* 3 Large carrots, grated
* 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
* 1-1/2 cups Greek style yogurt
* Salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil, salt and pepper together in a heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat until the oil smells peppery. Add grated carrots and cook, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and mix with yogurt. Mix in a pinch of salt if desired.

Chill well before serving.

Let's get you and your family going on the road to optimal health!! I would love to show you how Shaklee can improve your quality of life.
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