Harder Family

Harder Family

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Day 6 and 7

As this challenge progresses, we continue to learn new things every day. Yesterday (day 6) I took the girls on a field trip to the Chicago Art Institute. It was a fun time, but proved challenging when it came to lunch. How would I feed them one of our rice and beans recipes when we are away from the house? So, we decided to eat raw peanuts and bananas for "lunch" until we arrived at my friend's house. Once we were at her house, we were able to eat some rice, pineapple and veggies. We finally finished off the last of the Haitian and Puerto Rican beans last night. That meant that today (day 7) was hours of cooking some new food for the week. I have discovered that it is easier to spend extra time making a few meals vs. trying to make beans and rice every day. So, today you will have a few recipes that we will be trying over the next few days.

The first recipe I started with was a lentil soup recipe I received from Makeway Partners. They also sent me a recipe for Sudanese flat bread. We will be eating the lentil soup for dinner along with chapati bread. For lunch, we enjoyed Maharagwe beans (a red kidney bean recipe cooked in coconut milk with a little cinnamon and sugar). I served myself and the girls some beans along with a piece of Sudanese flat bread (which is more like an unsweetened pancake). I was surprised to see how much my stomach has shrunk doing this challenge. I had scooped myself a cup of beans with a piece of bread. I could only eat a little over half of my beans before feeling full. The girls ate a decent amount and then had a piece of fruit. I'm looking forward to dinner. I took a sample taste of the lentil soup and it tasted really good.

I also took time and made African Waakye. It tastes pretty good as well and I will probably be bringing this to CC on Monday. Finally, I made a sorghum/farro meal. I have been holding on to some free samples I received when we took a tour almost 2 years ago at Bob's Red Mill. I never knew how to use them, but decided with all this experimenting with new recipes, this was the time to utilize them. The recipe I found is from the Mediterranean. It has black beans, farro (with a little bit of sorghum since I only had one sample of this), spinach, cilantro, onions, and garlic. I'm looking forward to eating this since it smelled really good. You garnish this with some avocado and some feta. This will probably be a special meal since there aren't a lot of "orphans" in the Mediterranean and it seems like a luxurious meal after the week rice and beans.

Hopefully you enjoy the recipes. I have already marked a few to keep and make in the future.

Lentil Soup
- 2 Cups lentils
-2 quarts chicken stock
- 2 medium onions (I only used about 3/4 of one)
- 1 medium tomato
- 1 carrot (I used 4 carrots)
- 2 Tb. finely chopped onions
- 2 Tb. olive oil
- 2 tb. lemon juice
- 2 tsp. cumin
- salt/pepper

Chop the vegetables into medium size chunks. Wash the lentils. Put stock into a 4-5 qt pot and bring to a boil. Add the onions, carrot, tomato and lentils to the stock. Lowe the heat to simmer and cook for about 1/2 hour or until the lentils are tender.

Puree the mixture in either a food processor or blender and return to the pot. Saute the finely chopped onions in the olive oil until they are soft and brown.

Add the cumin, lemon juice, sauteed onions, salt, pepper to soup and stir slowly over low heat for about 3 minutes.

Sudanese Flat Bread:
- 2 cups wheat flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 2 cups water
- 2 tsp salt

This is a classic Sudanese pan-fried, unleavened flatbread that's really more of a pancake than a bread. But it's served in exactly the same way that bread is.

Sift the flour into a bowl then add the baking powder and salt and stir to combine.

Now, while stirring, add the water until a thick batter is formed. Heat a dry non-stick frying pan on medium heat then add a ladle full of the batter to the pan and flatten out until evenly spread. Continue frying on medium heat until golden brown on the base then flip to allow it to cook on the other side.

African Rice and Beans (Waakye):
- 1/2 cup oil
- 2- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 medium onion (I used 1/2)
- 1 Tb. paprika
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 4 diced tomatoes (I only had 1 left, so that is all I used)
- 2 cups rice (washed)
- 2 cups cooked beans (black, red, black-eyed peas) - I used black-eyed peas
- 4.5-5 cups chicken broth or water (I used chicken broth for more flavor)
- 1 Tb. salt
- 1 chicken bouillon

1. Heat a a saucepan with oil. Then add onions, garlic, thyme, paprika, cayenne pepper. Saute for about a minute, add tomatoes. Cook for 5-7 minutes.
2. Stir in the rice to the pan; continue stirring for about 2 minutes.
3. Then add beans, 4.5 cups chicken broth, bring to a boil and then reduce heat, and simmer until the rice is cooked. Adjust for salt and pepper. You have to stir occasionally to prevent burning.
4. Serve warm with chicken, stew or vegetables (we may add chicken later but for now, it is a stand alone dish).

***I will post the other recipes tomorrow***

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