Vegetarian Recipes

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Brussels Sprouts Risotto Recipe Recipe

Brussels Sprouts Risotto Recipe

02.27.12 by Jackie

Roasting vegetables is probably the best way to showcase the flavor, particularly the sweetness, of a vegetable. At the market this past week, I found some beautiful Brussels sprouts, which are one of Lulu’s favorite vegetables. I really enjoy them as well, especially when roasted. You can use them as a side, or as I did in this risotto, as the primary flavor in a main course.

Brussels sprouts risotto is synonymous with winter; it's succulent, creamy and the ultimate comfort food. I didn't add any cream though, just a touch of herb fromager d'Affinois at the end. To make the dish, I roasted some Brussels sprouts until soft, caramelized and tender and used them as a base to flavor risotto. I also added chopped Brussels sprouts to vegetable broth so the rice is bursting with the taste of the root vegetable.

Risotto is fairly easy to prepare, and a great showcase for fresh ingredients. My trick for consistently preparing quality risotto is to cook the grains of rice in a little oil so they don't stick to each other too much. Then, warm broth is incrementally added until the risotto is cooked to perfection. My husband Lulu loved it and I'm sure if you give this recipe a try, you will too!


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Vegetarian Quesadilla Recipe (Apple Brie Cheese Sandwich) Recipe

Over the past few months, I've really enjoyed cooking with California Lavash breads. I particularly enjoy the delicious soft pizza lavash flatbread. It's so versatile! Today, the California Lavash team came over and we cooked up a storm and took photos of our delicious creations.

My personal favorite was a cheese quesadilla filled with Brie cheese, walnuts and apples. It's the ultimate quick and easy snack. I also think it would make a great packed lunch. You’ll l♥ve it! Brie just oozes when it melts, and the apples approach the texture of apple sauce. The balance of flavors is just perfect and the walnuts really add a nice contrast of texture. The pizza lavash we used is a wonderful canvas for the flavors packed inside.


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Roasted Broccolini Recipe Recipe

Roasted Broccolini Recipe

02.22.12 by Jackie

Wintry leafy greens are available everywhere now. I particularly like broccolini. The long-stemmed broccoli look-alike is rather delicate with hints of bitterness. You could sauté, steam or simply boil this vegetable, but I prefer roasting it. In general, roasting vegetables enhances the natural sweet notes of the greens and turn the thin stalks almost as sweet and tender as asparagus.

The preparation is fairly simple. Toss broccolini in garlic, olive oil and a bit of Parmesan cheese for a touch of saltiness. The vegetables go into the oven until the stems are tender and the leaves are nice and crisp.


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Sun-Dried Tomato Polenta Recipe Recipe

Sun-Dried Tomato Polenta Recipe

02.16.12 by Jackie

Polenta is a coarse corn meal that, if cooked properly, makes a great side dish. It's definitely a change from mashed potatoes. I had some left-over polenta from last time I made cornbread, so I made this version, flavoring it with a small jar of sun-dried tomatoes and garlic. 

The preparation is similar to making risotto. The polenta cookes in a certain amount of broth until all the liquid is absorbed and there isn't a raw, starchy taste. At the end, I add sour cream for a richer mouth-feel.


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Olive Cornbread Recipe Recipe

Olive Cornbread Recipe

02.14.12 by Jackie

I recently saw on my Facebook page that one of PhamFatale's readers made my jalapeno cornbread, which reminded me that I hadn't made any in a long time. I created a new version using oil-cured black olives and an exquisite extra virgin olive oil from Cloud 9 Orchard.

May Chevallier is a true expert on olive oil and is the owner of a 140-acre ranch in southern Monterey County, where she planted 10, 000 olive trees. She's passionate about her Cloud 9 Orchard EVOO, which has won many prestigious awards. I recently met with May and she educated me about how to discern the quality of olive oil. I learned that too often olive oil is artificially enhanced with chlorophyll for color and synthetic olive flavor. Cloud 9 Orchard is free from any of these adulterations. You can order May's extra virgin olive oil directly from her. You won't be disappointed.


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