Grain Free Lemon Tart

Are you ready?  Like REEEEEALLY ready? Because this isn’t your standard lemon tart. It is a TART tart.  A creamy tart with pucker power but tempered with sweet agave nectar. It is the princess of tarts that will make you dream of fresh flowers, warm picnics, and lemon trees even when it is still stupid cold outside.

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I have been slightly obsessed with lemon tarts lately.  I made piss poor lemon bars last weekend and was out for vengeance.  I didn’t like the filling and was dead set on making a creamier version that could be placed into a tart crust.  So the hunt began for a lemon tart recipe that satisfied my obsession.  I studied several recipes and finally settled on an amalgamation of Julia Child’s Tarte Au Citron, Cookie and Kate’s Honey-Sweetened Citrus Curd, and Dave Lebovitz’s Lime Meringue Tart.

In the end, the curd recipe was adapted from Kathryn’s recipe.  I swapped agave nectar for the honey because I didn’t have honey on hand.  Kathryn’s curd was a bit sweeter than this lemon curd, which could be due to the sweetener swap. If you prefer a sweeter lemon curd, you might stick with honey which will provide that pronounced honey flavor or you could increase the quantity from 1/3 cup to 1/2 cup.  But I liked using the neutral-flavored agave nectar which allowed the tartness of the lemons to be the leading lady of the lemon curd. I also love tart things over sweet. Give me Sour Patch Kids any day of the week over Smarties. EEW.

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When making the curd, be careful when using the direct heat method to thicken the curd. Use nonreactive saucepan and either a wooden spoon or metal wire whisk. Plastic will make your curd curdle like curdly curdy curd. Hehe.  Just keep your heat on low and STIR constantly with a wire whisk. It’ll be fine.  However, if you get a little bit of cooked egg or lemon pulp in the curd, you can always strain the curd before placing it into the tart crust.  This lemon curd can also be made in advance and refrigerated for several weeks. It’s SO dreamy stirred into greek yogurt.

The almond flour-based tart crust pairs incredibly well with the lemon curd filling.  This grain free tart crust is amazing and can be used as a basic crust for a multitude of fillings.  I adapted the recipe from the Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook by Elana Amsterdam.  I used Dave Lebovitz’s method for making a basic french tart crust where he places butter, oil, water, sugar, and salt in a bowl and melts it in a hot oven before adding the flour. The butter begins to brown, giving it a wonderful complex and nutty flavor. So simple!

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I also should note that this is a prebaked tart crust. Because almond flour tends to burn easily, keep the heat slightly lower when prebaking and allow the shell to slightly brown.  After filling it with the prepared lemon curd, bake the filled tart until the filling has set (about 10 minutes).  If the edges of the tart begin to brown too quickly, place aluminum foil around the crust edge to protect it from burning.

You can top the lemon tart with meringue (like me) or fresh seasonal fruit. Once my blueberry and raspberry bushes begin to fruit, you can bet your butt that I will be topping these tarts with a gaggle of berries. But in the mean time, I piped a small amount of meringue around the edge of the tart using 2 reserved egg whites. I made a metric poop-ton (actual measurement) of meringue and was sad to see it go to waste.  I nearly made a second and third tart JUST to give that beautiful meringue a home.

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Grain Free Lemon Tart (adapted from recipes from Cookie and Kate and Dave Lebovitz)

Serves 8

Tart Crust Ingredients

  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted grass-fed butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • 2 Tablespoons agave nectar or honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Lemon Curd Filling Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 egg yolks (reserve whites for meringue)
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar (or honey)
  • 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice (about 3 to 4 large lemons)
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon zest
  • pinch of salt

Meringue Ingredients

  • 2 reserved egg whites 
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 Tablespoons agave nectar or honey

Tart Crust Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. 
  2. Place butter, coconut oil, water, agave nectar, and salt in a Pyrex bowl.
  3. Place bowl in preheated oven for 10 to 15 minutes.  Allow the butter and coconut oil to begin bubbling. The butter will begin to brown on the edges (a.k.a. browned butter).
  4. Remove the Pyrex bowl from the oven.  Be careful because the bowl will be hot.  Add almond flour, vanilla extract, and baking soda and stir quickly until a ball forms.
  5. Transfer dough ball to a 9-inch tart mold with a removable bottom. Use your fingers to spread dough into the base and up the edges of the tart pan. Prick the bottom all over with the tines of a fork.
  6. Partially bake for 7 to 10 minutes at 350 F.  You don’t want to fully bake or it will get too brown when later baking the filled tart.
  7. Remove the partially baked tart shell from the oven. Set aside and allow to fully cool before filling.

Lemon Curd Instructions:

  1. In a saucepan over low heat, heat butter, lemon juice, zest, and salt until butter is melted, but not boiling.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, egg yolks, and agave nectar for 1 to 2 minutes until combined and slightly frothy.
  3. Temper the egg mixture by adding a bit of the heated butter-lemon juice mixture to the eggs and whisking constantly.  This will warm the egg mixture without cooking your eggs.  After the eggs are slightly warmed and tempered, add them slowly to the warm butter-lemon juice mixture, whisking constantly.
  4. Increase the heat and cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly until the lemon curd mixture begins to thickens with a consistency of jelly. DO NOT LET IT BOIL!!! It is done the whisk is lifted from the curd and the mixture holds its shape when it falls back into the saucepan from the whisk (see picture below).
  5. Remove the curd from heat. Place the prebaked tart shell onto a rimmed baking tray.  (Be careful with the tart shell and the removable bottom!!! I have ruined a few tart crusts by accidentally pushing through the mold.) Scrape the filling into the prebaked tart shell.
  6. Bake at 350 F for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven.  You can either top with marshmallowy meringue (recipe below) or fresh seasonal fruit. Allow to cool completely before slicing.

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Marshmallowy Meringue (makes 3 cups):

  1. Heat 3 tablespoons of agave nectar in a microwave safe dish for 30 seconds (watch out because this might boil over).
  2. Add 2 egg whites and a pinch of salt to the bowl of a mixer. Turn on high and whip with whisk attachment until soft peaks form. Gradually drizzle in the heated agave nectar and a few drops of vanilla. The meringue will become shiny and slightly stiff.
  3. Scrape the meringue either into a pastry bag fitted with a fancy tip or (like me) scoop it into a Ziploc bag and cut the end off of the corner. Pipe the meringue in a ring around the tart. Or you can also spread the meringue with a spatula around the tart. (You will have meringue left over which either can be used for a second tart or stored in a mason jar in the refrigerator for 24 hours).
  4. Turn on the broiler in the oven. Place the tart under the broiler, watching VERY carefully because it will brown quickly! After the top begins to brown and darken, remove the tart from the oven and cool completely before slicing.
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Cauliflower Pizza Crust (Grain Free, Gluten Free, Paleo)

Pizza, beer, and a movie is my idea of a perfect date night.  I’ve been hunting around for a good grain free pizza crust recipe.  Who knew cauliflower would come to the rescue!

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Cauliflower is like the working mother of five or even fifteen.  It can transform into so many different things…mash it, roast it, puree it, rice it, grill it. And now I’m adding one more thing to the list…crust it…that is, pizza crust, my friends. I was really amazed at how much this tasted like pizza.

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Get out your handy dandy food processor and rice that cauliflower. Combine the riced cauliflower with eggs, seasonings, and some almond flour.  Preheating a pizza stone and applying the cauliflower pizza “dough” onto the preheated stone helps produce a crisper crust. Prebake to get a golden crust. Then top with whatever toppings you choose.  I have included my easy homemade pizza sauce recipe as well.  Friday pizza night is back on!

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Cauliflower Pizza Crust (slightly adapted from Love and Lemons)

  • 1 cauliflower, diced in 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon each of garlic powder, onion powder, salt
  • 1 teaspoon each of oregano and parsley
  • 3/4 cup almond flour

Homemade Pizza Sauce

  • 1 6 oz can of organic tomato paste
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tablespoon each of oregano, basil, and parsley
  • 1 teaspoon each of garlic powder and onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  1. 1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place a pizza stone in the oven and allow to preheat.
  2. Chop cauliflower into 1/2-inch pieces. Place cauliflower flourettes into the food processor and pulse for a “riced” consistency. Don’t go too far or you will puree it. Remove from food processor and place the riced cauliflower into a microwave save bowl. Microwave for 3 minutes.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and mix  to form into a wet ball. If it is too sticky to handle, add more almond flour. Gently knead it a few times to help it come together. Remember…this is cauliflower, NOT all purpose flour so it will not resemble typical pizza dough.
  4. Remove the preheated pizza stone from the oven or use a baking sheet. Place parchment paper on top of the stone or baking sheet. Press the cauliflower “dough” ball onto the pizza stone or baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Gently mold it into a 1/4-inch thick circle.
  5. Bake at 450 F for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown.
  6. For the pizza sauce, combine all ingredients into a medium bowl. Top the baked pizza crust with the homemade pizza sauce.Then top with your favorite ingredients. We topped ours with cheese (not paleo, but I really wanted some melty cheese), pepperoni, jalapeño, and mushrooms.
  7. Bake for about 10 minutes.

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Paleo Cranberry and Apple Cobbler

My heart is heavy on this last day of December and this last day of 2012. I’m staying in my pajamas and watching the snow fall. The snow falls so peaceful outside my window, yet I know that sometimes there is no peace and life is just not fair.  

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My thoughts go out to everyone who has lost someone this year. My thoughts go out to those that are lost. My thoughts go out to those that are enduring hardships that are unfathomable. 

There are so many cruel and unfair things that occur and I always ask “why?”…but sometimes there is no reason. It’s just the way it is.  I only hope that there is something better that hopefully will come out of tragedy.

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So I make this cobbler for my friends that are struggling right now, my friends that are enduring an unfathomable loss, my friends that are lost in life.  I make this cobbler to hopefully bring comfort into their hearts and to warm their souls.

Paleo Cranberry and Apple Cobbler (Grain Free, Gluten Free, and Diary Free) (adapted from Beeckman 1802 Heirloom Cookbook)

Filling:

  • 12 oz bag of fresh cranberries
  • 3 medium apples, cored and diced
  • 1/4 cup crystallized ginger, diced
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder

Topping:

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease a 9X9-inch baking dish with butter, coconut oil or nonstick spray.  Set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine cranberries, apples, crystallized ginger, water, and honey. Heat over medium heat until the mixture begins to boil and the cranberries pop. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in arrowroot powder. Pour the hot cranberry mixture into the baking dish and set aside.
  3. In a separate medium bowl, combine all of the topping ingredients. Mix well.  Spoon the topping mixture evenly over the filling.
  4. Bake at 350F for 30 to 40 minutes. The cobbler will begin to bubble and the topping should lightly brown.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes.  Best when served with vanilla coconut ice cream!

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds (Pepitas)

Tis’ the season of roasting pumpkins, butternut squash, acorn squash, delicata squash…. We all know what to do with the roasted flesh. Hello pumpkin pie and pumpkin bread.

But, don’t stop there! Roast those seeds. They are delicious as a snack, on a salad, or topping a delicious pumpkin or butternut squash soup!

These were a great addition on our holiday table this year. I used the seeds from the pie pumpkin that was the centerpiece for our Friendsgiving!

Toasted pumpkin seeds are a healthy snack too.  The flavors options are endless: Cajun, BBQ, cinnamon-spice, curry, or simply salt and pepper.

When you scoop out the seeds from the pumpkin or winter squash, wash off the pumpkin goop. Discard stringy fiber from seeds along with any seeds that are split or cracked then transfer to a strainer and rinse well. Drizzle with olive oil, seasoning, and salt. Roast in an oven until golden and BAM. Tasty tasty tasty.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving.  We are lucky to have amazing friends and family to celebrate and eat delicious food with.  Please be safe this week in your travels! Merry Thanksgiving from Kansas City!

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Ingredients

  • Seeds from one medium-sized pumpkin or winter squash (Acorn, Butternut, Hubbard, Delicata) – about 1 cup
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 to 2 tsp seasoning of choice (Cajun, BBQ, curry, cinnamon n sugar) (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Spray a rimmed baking sheet with nonstick spray.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, drizzle the olive oil over the pumpkin seeds. Add the seasoning of choice and salt. Toss well. Place seeds in a single layer across a baking sheet.
  3. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until seeds are golden. Sprinkle with a bit more seasoning when the seeds come out of the oven. Taste and season with more salt if needed. Makes about 1 cup.

Kale Salad with Cranberries, Pecans, and Roasted Apples

I’m drowning. Drowning in recipes and ideas and drooling over too many food photos. I can’t decide what to make for Thanksgiving. I want to make tooooo much.

How about sweet potatoes…..or sweet potato casserole, or sweet potato and chard gratin, or sweet potatoes with bourbon glaze. No…I’ll make a gluten free apple pie, or an apple crisp….or baked apples….or Ack…wait… look at these chocolate-caramel tartlettes.

OK…something green….. like green beans, green beans with miso and almonds, or roasted brussel sprouts, or….. *SNAP* And then my brain just…shuts….down. Stops.

And then I end up thinking…well, hell…I guess I’ll just make a salad.

But this just isn’t any salad, people. It’s a celebration. A Kale Party!  Ya…I know no one thinks of a party when you say “YAY KALE”. Except me. And well, maybe my friend Kathryn.

This kale party in a bowl salad is adapted from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. Another winning recipe from this amazing compilation from Deb.  She uses cherries where I used cranberries that I had on hand. I also added roasted apples and toasted pecans for autumnal festiveness. Dig in….

Kale Salad with Cranberries, Pecans, and Roasted Apples

Serves 6 to 8

Kale Salad Ingredients

  • 1 bunch of kale, washed and dried, stalks removed and leaves torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries (or cherries)
  • 1/4 cup raw pecans, chopped
  • 1 medium apple, cored and sliced thin

Honey Dijon Dressing Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon smooth Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.  Place apple slices on half of a roasting pan. On the other side of the pan, place the chopped pecans. Roast for 5 minutes. Remove from oven, and stir. Place back in oven for an additional 5 minutes, keeping an eye on the pecans to make sure that they don’t burn. Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperature.
  2. Meanwhile, place torn kale leaves in a medium to large serving bowl. Sprinkle with a dash of salt and gently massage the kale until it begins to break down a bit.  Add the dried cranberries, toasted pecans, and roasted apples. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. For the honey dijon dressing,  add the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, and honey to a small mason jar with a lid. Shake the jar vigorously.  Drizzle the dressing evenly over the salad.  Toss everything together to coat everything in dressing.  Although you can eat the salad immediately, I let mine rest for at least 20 minutes, allowing the leaves to become even more tender.  This salad is great for make ahead events!

Roasted Cauliflower

Cauliflower….oh you bland vegetable. I so often discount you. I generally choose more colorful vegetables over you…but you have shown me the err in my ways. By simply roasting you in an oven, you transform into delicious, addictive, and caramelized veggie poppers.

I drizzled a good olive oil over the florets and sprinkled them with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper. Threw them in a preheated oven that was set at 425 F and roasted them for 35 to 45 minutes. Holy Moses, I PROMISE you will NOT be disappointed. One head should serve 4 as a side, but I have to admit that two of us destroyed an ENTIRE head of cauliflower in one sitting.  Next time I will experiment with other seasonings such as smoked paprika, chili powder, or even curry. Mmmm.

So, quite ignoring cauliflower…go out there and give that veggie a new purpose in life!  You are welcome.

Roasted Cauliflower

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon sea salt (or kosher salt)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Oil or spray a roasting pan with nonstick spray.
  2. Put cauliflower in a large bowl. Drizzle olive oil, salt, and pepper over the florets. Mix until well coated. Lay the florets in a single layer on the roasting pan. Place in oven and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, stirring halfway through the cooking time. Pull out of the oven, and try to let them cook before burning your mouth off by eating them directly from the roasting pan (I speak from experience, people).

Curried Tomato and Sweet Potato Soup

It is SPRING! Hope you had a great weekend.

Happy Food Matters Monday. Today’s fabulous recipe is brought to you by the FMP project. The original recipe, Curried Tomato Soup with Hard Boiled Eggs, was chosen by Joanne of Eats Well With Others. This is a simple and delicious version of tomato soup.

Although tomatoes are definitely not in season right now, I luckily still had two mason jars of canned tomatoes in my cellar that I had canned this past summer.  You can easily substitute regular canned tomatoes.

The original recipe called for 3 cups of tomatoes, 2 potatoes, cauliflower, and hard boiled eggs.  Sorry, but the hard boiled eggs on top of a soup kind of freaked me out. If you want to give it a go, try it. I tried to poach an egg in the soup, and it turned out ok. But I probably wouldn’t do it again…but that’s just me.

My version has sweet potatoes that I had stored from the market and a mix of kale and swiss chard from my garden.  This just goes to show you how versatile this recipe, and most recipes, are. You can substitute whatever you have on hand or whatever is in season for most vegetables.

Curry powder and sweet potatoes are a match made in heaven!

Adding coconut milk gives his soup added creaminess.

I also pureed the soup using an immersion or hand blender which makes this soup ever more creamier. You can leave it chunky, if you prefer.

You could also reduce the amount of water in the recipe (use 1 cup instead of 3) and serve this over basmati rice!

Curried Tomato and Sweet Potato Soup (Adapted from Mark Bittman’s Food Matters Cookbook)

Time: 30 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil (or vegetable oil)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger (or 1 tablespoon of fresh grated ginger)
  • 2 tablespoons of curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 1 cup lite coconut milk
  • 3 cups vegetable broth or water
  • 3 cups of diced tomatoes (2 cans) with juice
  • 1 bunch of kale (1 to 2 cups), ribs removed and sliced in 1 inch ribbons
  • 4 tablespoons of chopped cilantro
  • salt and pepper to taste

Ingredients:

  1. Heat coconut oil in a heavy dutch oven over medium-high heat until melted. Add onions and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add garlic, ginger, curry powder, cumin, and red pepper flakes. Cook for an addition 1 minute or until spices become fragrant.
  2. Add diced sweet potatoes and carrot. Stir and cook for 2 minutes, coating potatoes.
  3. Add coconut milk, vegetable broth (or water), and diced tomatoes with juice. Bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer with lid on pot for 15 to 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
  4. Use an immersion blender (hand blender) or a regular blender (or food processor) to puree most of the soup. If using an immersion blender, place the immersion blender into the pot and puree the soup until your get the desired consistency. If you are using a regular blender, remove a few cups at a time and puree in batches. Be careful to not splatter the hot soup. Add the pureed soup back to the pot.
  5. Add kale and cook over medium-low heat for an additional 5 to 10 minutes or until kale is tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Ladle into 4 bowls. Top with chopped cilantro.

Seared Bean Sprout Salad with Sesame-Orange Dressing

What is a bean sprout? It’s the sprout from a germinated mung bean. Bean sprouts are usually used in asian cooking and provide a bright crunchy texture to a stir fry dish. I originally intended on sprouting my own mung beans (which is really easy), but I didn’t have time. It takes 5 to 7 days of soaking the mung beans in water (changing every 12 hours). But you can easily find bean sprouts at your local grocer or asian market.

Today’s recipe is brought to you by the Food Matters Project, which is a group of foodie bloggers dedicated to cooking our way through Mark Bittman’s Food Matters Cookbook. The original recipe was chosen by Dominica of Food Wine Love and was supposed to be Seared Bean Sprouts with Beef and Sesame-Orange Sauce. 

Although this looked both easy and delicious, I was on my way to a dinner party last night and needed to bring a side dish. I decided to turn the recipe into a bright and colorful salad, adding some shredded carrots, diced cucumber, and chopped cilantro. It was really easy to throw together and was definitely unique.

Check the FMP website to see what the other foodies chose to do with this recipe!

Seared Bean Sprout Salad with Sesame-Orange Dressing

Makes: 8 servings (as a side dish)

Salad Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon canola oil or coconut oil
  • 1 lb bean sprouts, rinsed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 bunch of scallions, green and white parts chopped
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

Dressing Ingredients

  • 2 oranges, juiced
  • zest of 1/2 orange
  • 1/2 Tablespoon fresh ginger, minced or grated
  • 2 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon tahini paste
  • 1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon honey

Instructions:

  1. Add 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds to a DRY skillet. Cook on medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, lightly toasting sesame seeds. Remove and set aside.
  2. Place 1 tablespoon of oil in skillet and heat over medium heat. When oil is hot (not smoking), toss in bean sprouts and salt. Stir fry for 3 to 5 minutes, or until lightly browned. Remove and place in colander. Run cold water over sprouts to stop them from cooking. You want them to still be crips.
  3. Add the sprouts, cucumber, shredded carrot, cilantro, and scallions to a medium serving bowl.
  4. Combine all dressing ingredients into a mason jar or lidded jar. Shake well. Pour over salad and stir.  Chill until you are ready to serve it. Toss before serving and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.

Huevos Rancheros with Black Beans

I loooooove breakfast. Lazy Sunday morning breakfast dates with my husband are the best thing on earth.  Our favorite breakfast joint back in Norman was a fabulous place called Turquoise Cafe. They were fresh, inventive, and used local ingredients. Brunch items included oatmeal brûlée, amazing huevos rancheros, and blue corn migas. I’d stab someone’s eye out with a spork for those migas or huevos. Ya, you heard me. Don’t stand in front of me and a good brunch, buddy.

But alas, Turquoise is no more (sniff sniff). It closed shortly after we moved due to some unfortunate circumstances. But, I still crave that food with a vengeance.

I have yet to find any breakfast joint in KC that comes close to Turquoise. We have searched near and far, and still nothing.

I set out to try to recreate the Huevos from that restaurant and I do believe that I have it down to a science, and, in my opinion, have perfected the recipe. Huevos Rancheros (Rachers Eggs) is a basic mexican breakfast that usually consists of fried eggs, tortillas, and cooked salsa.

I like to serve my huevos over black beans. This dish is SO freaking easy and quick. On a busy night, I often will whip this up for dinner. It seriously takes less than 10 minutes to put this meal together.

All you need is eggs, tortillas, cheese, black beans, and salsa. I think cilantro is a huge bonus but not a must. Luckily, my cilantro never gave up the ghost over our lackluster winter and I was able to run out there and nab some to sprinkle on the eggs.

Heat your oven to 350F and place tortillas with a sprinkle of cheese into the oven to melt the cheese. Use whatever cheese you have on hand: cheddar, pepper jack, goat cheese, or even parmesan….seriously.

I like to add a bit of ground cumin to black beans for a good earthy flavor, but it isn’t necessary if you do not have the spice. Add a bit of salsa to your black beans and heat in the microwave while the tortillas are warming in the oven. After the cheese is melted on the tortillas, put the tortillas on oven-proof serving plates and then place a bit of black beans down the middle of each tortilla. Lower the oven temp to 200 F and place the prepared plates in the oven to keep warm while making the eggs.

Fry or scramble some huevos (eggs) to top off the dish. I like my eggs over-medium with a great runny yolk. I recommend getting local, cage-free and farm fresh eggs, if possible. They taste and look so different than traditional store-bought eggs with amazing orange yolks instead of yellow. Mmmmm…love some good orange-yoked eggs for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Huevos Rancheros with Black Beans

Note: On the serving size, I usually eat one egg and one tortilla whereas my husband eats two eggs and two tortillas. So, adjust your portion size according to your crowd.

Serves 2 

Ingredients

  • 2 to 4 huevos (eggs)
  • 2 to 4 corn tortillas
  • 2 cups (1 15oz can) of black beans
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of cheese (whatever you have on hand)
  • 1/2 cup prepared salsa
  • Toppings – cilantro, green onions, extra cheese
  • salt and fresh cracked pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 F. Place tortillas on a baking sheet. Spray tortillas on both sides with nonstick spray. Sprinkle a couple tablespoons of shredded cheese on each tortilla. Place in preheated oven. Once the cheese is melted (about 2 minutes), remove from oven. Reduce oven temp to 200F.
  2. Mix black beans, 1/4 cup salsa, cumin, and 1/8 teaspoon of salt in a medium microwavable bowl. Microwave (or heat on the stove in a saucepan) for about 2 minutes, or until warmed through. Stir.
  3. Place 1 to 2 cheese-topped tortillas on each serving plate. Place about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of warmed black beans down the middle of each melted cheese-topped tortilla. Set aside or place oven-proof plates in 200F oven to keep warm.
  4. Cook eggs over medium (or however you desire). Remove warmed plates from oven. Place one egg on top of black beans. Sprinkle with cilantro, green onions, and extra cheese. Serve with salsa.