Asian-ish Red Cabbage Slaw – Variation on a Recipe from Orangette

March 2, 2011 in Gluten Free, Healthy Fare, Side Dishes

Asian-inspired Red Cabbage Slaw

I didn’t set out to create a post when I made this, I was just kicking around the ol’ internets for something healthy and flavorful to do with red cabbage, and I happened upon this recipe for a rice noodle salad from Orangette. Knowing that the source is as reputable as they come, I decided to give it a whirl.

I love the umami dimension added by the fish sauce, and I’m always a fan of the clean tanginess of rice vinegar.  My version excises the chicken and noodles to make it a total low-carb bonanza (it was already gluten-free), adds a touch of toasted sesame oil, and substitutes cashews for the peanuts, but I owe the main flavor profile to the brilliant Ms. Wizenburg. Cabbage is one of the most economical veggies out there, so add it to your menu planning often! Read the rest of this entry →

Home-Made Ricotta in a Ricotta Salad Stack – A Beginner’s Adventure in Cheese Making for Fab Frugal Friday

September 24, 2010 in Frugal Tips, Healthy Fare

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Ricotta Salad Stack made with home made ricotta

Home made cheese? I never thought I would be so bold as to attempt this, but life has a way of changing us, sometimes allowing us to do the previously impossible. When you tell someone “I made my own cheese,” they will be astounded  – - – that is, until they find out how easy it really is. To make ricotta: 5 minutes max is all it takes.

I decided it was time in my progression as a cook to attempt a home made cheese. In all the recipes I reviewed, ricotta seemed the most do-able. A good step for beginning cheese makers. And, I am happy to report success! You don’t even need a thermometer – that’s how easy this is!

Here’s the entire “recipe:”

I was inspired by posts on two blogs – Recipe Girl and  Eggs On Sunday and followed them pretty closely. Bring 2 cups whole milk and 2 cups half-and-half to a boil with a pinch of salt and boil exactly 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in 1/4 cup of lemon juice. Strain in a fine mesh strainer. That’s it. Really.

True, it is creamy and yummy and a little less than purchased ricotta. But. To be honest, the main satisfaction you will get is not savings or taste, but in feeling competent enough to make cheese.

To show off my newly acquired cheese-making talent, I just shaved some zucchini very thin, used some sliced garden tomatoes and basil leaves, a little s & p, and – Voila! - effortless, fresh and delicious first course – Heavy on the ricotta, of course!
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