Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Pre Basting

This time of year is fraught with stress for some, depression for others, and some lucky ones float about in a cloud of joyful tinged with expectation. Aside from the constant onslaught of Turkeyday food shows and the brain smashing Christmas Decoration and Music from the Commercial Juggernaut of Retailers, there are some good things to be found. Thus:

Your Daily Cool Thing:

I dunno about YOU, but this thing makes me want to belt out "Oh Christmas Tree! Oh Christmas Tree!" at the top of my lungs in an elevator filled with stuffy lawyers.

Your Daily Wonderful Design:

I am ever thankful for those designers and artists who make me suck air into my body with a hiss through my teeth, in a "Wow!" kinda way. This makes me want to grab my scissors and glue and withstand a zillion paper cuts.

Your Daily Inspiring Words:

“Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light.” Albert Schweitzer

Your Daily Wicked-Good Food:

This ancient grain is a powerhouse of goodness. Packed with essential protein and other nutritional necessities, it was used extensively in the Pre-Columbian culture. The outer coating can be a bit bitter, so it is best to soak the quinoa prior to cooking it. Cooking quinoa is similar to rice. Simply use 2 cups of water for every cup of quinoa. Bring to a boil and simmer for 14-18 minutes until the seed pops open and a curly-que shaped inner "germ" (not THAT kind of germ, silly!) emerges. My favorite dish for quinoa is as follows:

Ingredients (serves two to four depending on appetite and, well, all sorts of things)

1 cup quinoa
1 medium acorn squash (delicata squash works nicely, too)
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 small onion
1 package of Tempeh (3 grain is yummy)
8 ounces (or more) of feta cheese cubed or crumbled
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (Braggs amino acids are good, too)

Prepare quinoa as directed above. Set aside.
Split, and clean acorn squash and bake in an oven at 375 for 40- mins until moderately soft.
Chop onion, mince garlic and saute in olive oil until clear and soft.
Cut tempeh into cubes and add to onion mixture, stir and continue to cook until tempeh is browned and onions are caramelized.

In a bowl mix the tempeh/onion mixture with the quinoa and add the cubed cheese and walnuts. Fill the squash with this in a hugely bountiful and heaping way and return it to the oven to re-heat at 375 until the cheese is hot. Being feta, it won't melt, per se, but it will heat through after about 10 minutes.