Bean soup with kale

When you have home-cooked beans in the refrigerator, this simple soup will be sure to please on a cold winter day.

Vegetable stock, made in the usual way

Leftover gigante beans
kale, blanched for 4+ minutes in boiling salted water, then drained

Carrots, diced
Onions, diced
garlic, minced

Sauté onion in olive oil in medium soup pot/pan. Add carrots and cook until softened.
Add in garlic and cook for less than one minute.
Add in stock and bring up to temp. Add S&P.
Add in beans and kale and warm through.

Serve with either grated parmesan or a drizzle of olive oil in each bowl.

Chickpeas Vinaigrette aka Garbanzos salad

When you have cooked up a luscious pot of garbanzo beans at home, you’re going to want to eat them pronto. Here’s one way:

Cooked chickpeas, 1/2 #
carrots, small dice
Roasted sweet peppers, large dice/pieces
garlic, minced

Olive oil
Lemon juice
Sweet onion, about 1/3, large dice
Apple cider vinegar

Put onion in cider vinegar to sit for 15 mins or earlier if need be.

Make vinaigrette:
Whisk together:
Lemon juice
Some apple cider vinegar
Olive oil

Carrots & sweet peppers

Mix vinaigrette and carrots/peppers into warm beans (if possible)
Add in scallions

More on beans – Garbanzo in Instant Pot

Exploring the delicious world of home-cooked beans, I moved on to garbanzo, one of my faves, and one I had the most difficulty with cooking stovetop.

here’s my success story:

1# beans, picked over and rinsed

Water to 1/2 way mark on Instant Pot, to which you add 1 T salt and perhaps one garlic clove, peeled. (Why not?!)

Cook for 42 minutes under pressure. Let release naturally for 10-15 minutes (as with all beans, I just read), then release pressure. Test for doneness, and cook longer if needed. (I initially cooked for 35 minutes and then returned to pressure for 8 minutes.)

Curried coconut milk vegetables & tofu

For winter, when fresh green produce is not on the scene, but you’re craving some veggies.

Put up pot of brown basmati rice (22 mins under pressure timed in instant pot). Ratio rice: water = 1:1   (1:1-3/4 in rice cooker)

onion, 1 large, diced
cauliflower, scant 1/2 head, separated into large florets, rinsed
potatoes, 2, cut into very small dice
Carrots, 4+, peeled and cut
Tofu, 1 block, pressed to drain, cut into cubes (add at end)
Garlic, 2 cloves, minced
Ginger, peeled and grated
Red curry paste, about 2/3 can
Coconut milk, 1 can
Vegetable stock, 1 pint, approx
Fish sauce

optional: scallions, cilantro, etc to top when served

In large dutch oven, sauté onion in peanut/olive oil mixture for 5+ minutes until softened. Add ginger, then curry paste, stir and add garlic. Then add vegetables:

Stir and cover with coconut milk and vegetable stock. Cook 20-30 minutes until vegetables are softened. Add salt.
Five or more minutes before done, stir in tofu to heat up.

Sichuan-style broccoli with garlic and red pepper

Sichuan style broccoli with garlic and red pepper
Easy, quick and cheap

Craving Szechuan numbing peppers and not motivated enough to head out of the house for a restaurant over 1/2 hour away, I stayed in on a cold rainy Sunday and cooked up some delicious spicy broccoli with reheated rice.

Here’s how:

Put up pot of water.

Cut broccoli into medium-size florets. Peel stems and cut into thick slices.
Reconstitute some birds eye peppers with hot water from the heating broccoli-cooking water in a small bowl. Get out your Sichuan peppercorns (use 1/2 t).
Peel and slice a few garlic cloves.

Heat rice in instant pot with steam function for five minutes.

When the water comes to a boil, add 1 t salt and 1 T peanut oil. Add broccoli and blanch for two minutes. Scoop into colander and let drain.

Heat sauté pan, add 3 T peanut oil and peppers and garlic. Heat for less than 30 seconds and add broccoli, tossing and stirring for one minute until coated with flavorful oil. Add salt and dump onto rice in a bowl. Feel virtuous and well nourished. Indulge in a slice of good bread. A pear makes a nice dessert.

Inspiration: Fuschia Dunlop, Stir-Fried Broccoli with chili and Sichuan Pepper, p 174, Every Grain of Rice

Winter fruit pie with almonds

This is where “easy as pie” must come from! This is a close cousin of fruit crisp, and is easier and simpler than a traditional apple pie.

Almond pie shell (aka “crust”) and almond topping for my wheat-flour averse friends. Added benefit: pie shell involves no rolling out; quick and easy!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


Almond pie shell:

1-1/2 c almond flour (168 g)
3 T sugar (37.5 g)
3 T (1.5 oz) butter, melted
pinch salt (optional: pinch cinnamon)

Combine almond flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl with whisk, then stir in melted butter with a spoon. Press into pie pan, and bake about 20 mins until just turning golden. Remove from oven and let cool, or jump on in and make filling.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Almond topping:
Almonds, slivered, 3 oz, chopped coarsely
Almond flour, 3+ oz (or use wheat flour, part WW pastry flour)
Brown sugar, 5 oz+
Cardamom (not too much!)
Dried ginger
Sea salt, fine, pinch
butter, 6 T melted, and cooled a bit

Mix together and then chill to get butter to clump up the mixture.
Can be made well in advance and refrigerated.
Fruit filling:

Dried fruit
Mix together:
Diced apricots
Crystallized (candied) ginger

Fresh fruit
apple, 1, cored, peeled and sliced 1/4”+ thick
pears, 2, prep same as apple (optional: add 4 oz cranberries, picked over and rinsed)

Sugar, 3 oz — 1/2 vanilla sugar, 1/2 light brown sugar
Cardamom (not too much!)
Lemon juice


Mix together sugar and spices. Juice one lemon, and de-seed. Keep on hand.
Cut apple and pears in half, core, peel and slice. Put one at a time in bowl. Add lemon juice, toss with hands, sprinkle with sugar. Repeat with remaining fresh fruit.
Mix in dried fruit mixture.
Mix in 2 T cornstarch, and mix well.

Line baking sheet with silpat and place pie pan on top.
Dump fruit mixture into pie shell. Place topping on top.

Bake at 375 degrees for 50+ minutes until fruit juices are bubbling around edges.
If crumb gets too dark, cover lightly with foil.

Which is from Rustic Fruit Desserts by Cory Schreiber & Julie Richardson