Impromptu Thai-ish salad with leftover steak

If someone should give you a cooked steak to take home post-barbecue, this a nice way to see it again.

Dressing:

Lime juice — macerate red onions in this first
Fish sauce, same quantity as lime juice
Soy sauce (just a tad)
Ginger, finely grated
Salt
Sambal oelek — or other red pepper product for heat
Brown sugar
Dash peanut oil

Red onions, sliced or diced — macerated in lime juice
Cooked beans, such as cannellini
Watercress, spinach or other greens such as lettuce
Red pepper, diced
Carrot, diced
Radishes, sliced
peanuts, roasted and unsalted
Cold cooked steak, sliced

inspiration:

and Ellie Krieger

 

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Chick pea spinach salad

Preparing for a pot luck, I cooked some chick peas and then while the instant pot was doing its thing, I went outside to do some gardening and planting and cutting lilacs, and playing with the cat, and oh, planting a shrub. I came inside to find that the pot had reached its set 49 minutes oh, 27 minutes ago. Surely overcooked! I released the pressure and found the beans somewhat mushy and was immediately disappointed. Then I found this warm chick pea and spinach recipe that seemed like a good idea.

Then I was hungry and it being lunch time I thought: Hmm, freshly-cooked chick peas, I can serve myself some mushy beans. I went halfway with the ideas in that aforementioned recipe:
Spinach in a bowl sprinkled with olive oil and salt, topped with warm chick peas, to slightly wilt the spinach. Macerated some red onion in lemon juice, went outside and cut some chives; sprinkled beans with smoked paprika and then chives. Added cut up carrot, aforementioned onions, some feta and lots of olive oil and salt. Mmm. IMG_6602

Olive oil, spinach and beans are delicious. The subtle dark tone of smoked paprika sets off the flavor against the bright high-note lemon. I always like two familial flavors such as here red onions and chives. (I think next time I will macerate onions longer, and/or reduce quantity.)

Ingredients:

chickpeas, 1 # cooked with 1 T salt & 1 garlic clove (49 minutes in my Instant Pot)

Spinach
Red onion, cut into pieces, macerated in lemon juice for 2 – 4 minutes.
Smoked paprika (sweet)
Chives
carrots, 2 sliced
Feta

Beans and shrimp, North African flavors

Some days dinnertime rolls around and we’re not enthused about a big cooking endeavor but don’t want to fall back into the old familiar. Here’s a simple idea for when beans are around: beans with shrimp and North African spices. And on the table in about 20 mins or less. Would be a good time to cook up some flatbread to go with, along with minted yogurt perhaps.

For the saltiness and acid, olives and preserved lemon are preferred. But if they’re not on hand — remember, this is all about “easy” — improvise with capers and lemon juice.

For two people:

8-10 shrimp, shelled and de-veined
chickpeas, 1 c plus cooking liquid (or stock or water)

onion, 1/2, diced
Garlic, 3 cloves, minced
Hot smoked paprika, 1/4 to 1/2 t
(or use sweet smoked paprika and add red pepper flakes, 1/2 t)
Cumin, 1/2 t

If you have green olives — spiced or not — use 2 handfuls
Preserved lemon, 1, rinsed and sliced into thin strips

optional: mint leaves, torn or chopped, for garnish

Directions:

Heat sauté pan, and add 1 T olive oil and sauté onion for about 4-5 mins until soft, then add garlic and then spices. Then add beans and cooking water, and heat to hot and bubbling, adding black pepper. You want the spices to meld and some of the water to cook off.
Add shrimp and cook for 2-3 minutes, submerging in liquid and turning.

Serve in shallow bowls with mint on top.

Inspiration: Food 52

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
Cumin
Cayenne
S&P

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

Make vinaigrette:
Whisk together:
Garlic
Honey
Cayenne
Cumin
S&P
Lemon juice
Some apple cider vinegar
Olive oil

Mince:
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.)

Adventures in cooking beans in Instant Pot

Factors that have led me to cook beans recently:
1. I purchased an Instant Pot.
2. Instant Pot led me to purchase dried beans at my food coop.
3. Frugality. Reading about it; not actually practicing yet! But it led me to a stockpile of dried beans.

Two successes of late:
Cranberry aka Borlotti beans are the bomb.
Oh the gigante were creamy, smooth, delicious.
Today’s black beans were off the charts. I thought I liked canned black beans well enough, but MAN, these are scrumptious! Delicious, not just as a mix-in for the greater sum.

Note it takes longer than cooking time — It takes 9-14 mins to come to pressure, then there’s the cooking time PLUS to release pressure, either by itself, for 10-15 minutes, or by human power, turning the steam release valve.

Here’s how I prepared today’s rice and beans with black beans:

Prepare brown rice in rice cooker. Medium grain is nice. 1 c rice, rinsed well to 2 1/2 c water, and salt.

Rinse 1 # beans. Measure out 5 c water.

Ingredients:
onion, 1 large, diced
Garlic, 3 cloves, minced
cumin, 1 t
salt, 1 T

Directions:
Rinse beans
Cut up onion. Heat up Instant Pot on sauté function, add 2 T olive oil, and then onions. Sauté for 20 minutes until golden, stirring occasionally.
Mix in garlic and cumin. Stir and cook for less than one minute until fragrant.
Add: beans, salt, water, and stir.
Pressure cook for 45-50 minutes. Allow pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, then release manually. If beans are not cooked through, cook for another 5 minutes, and then manually release pressure.

Serve:
Steamed spinach, sprinkled with za’atar
Rice
Beans
Hot sauce
Dab of sour cream
Pepitas

Other ways to do it: skip za’atar; add 1 t chili powder to beans with cumin; top with cilantro and scallions and Monterey Jack cheese.)
Another option: Purée 1 tomato, cilantro, scallion whites and 1 garlic clove with 3 T olive oil and salt. Mix tomato mixture into beans when cooked and let sit for 5 minutes.

Inspiration: Melissa Clark, Dinner in an Instant, Black Beans, p. 109

Bean cooking times and proportions:

Gigante
1 # beans to 7 c water with aromatics, 32 minutes +

Black turtle beans
1 # beans to 5 c water, with sautéed onion, then 3 garlic cloves, minced and 1 t cumin, 50 mins. (or less)

Cranberry beans
1 # beans to 7 c water, with 3+ garlic cloves, smashed, 4 T olive oil, pinch of red pepper flakes, and some fresh sage leaves if ya got ’em, 24 – 27(?) minutes. (14 mins to come to pressure.)

Garbanzo
1 #, covered with water to halfway mark. Add 1+ T salt

Cook for 42 minutes. Let pressure release naturally (for all beans) for 10-15 minutes, then release pressure manually

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Here are some guidelines

And more on timing beans in Instant Pot

And here is a collection of Instant Pot cooking info: