We go together... (ingredient sharing in meal prep!)
Maybe you've heard it from us before, but we'll say it again: Smart meal planning is cost savings.
It isn't cost-effective to buy a ton of one-time-use ingredients. Establishing a basic pantry, or at least considering how you can use the same ingredients multiple times in different ways, will be a huge boon to your bank account. You can create more meal variation than you might think by planning for different textures, using different spices, cooking recipes from different places around the globe that prepare the same basic grains in very different ways, etc.
We tend to vary things at Hearth & Table week by week, but the past two weeks are an example of us practicing what we preach. What did you think?
Black beans & rice, taco salad style
1 cup dried black beans, rinsed and soaked overnight in refrigerator
4 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
2 onions, julienned
Salt, pepper & cooking oil
1 teaspoon cumin
2 cups white rice
Water to cover by 1 inch
Salt to taste
2 limes, zest & juice
1 cup sour cream
1⁄2 bunch cilantro, minced (leaves & stems)
Salt and pepper
1 can black olives, drained
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
Corn tortilla chips
1. In a large pot, combine the beans, 4 cups of water and 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a strong simmer over medium-high heat, then cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 60 to 90 minutes or until the beans are tender.
2. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 400 degrees. Toss the onions with oil to coat, season with salt, pepper and cumin and roast on a sheet pan (cookie pan) until browned and a bit crispy, about 15-20 minutes. Set aside.
3. While the onions are roasting, start cooking the rice. Put the rice and some water in a medium saucepan and rinse the rice with cold water, swirling with your hand. Carefully drain the water, then add fresh water until it’s about one inch (or one finger knuckle) above the level of the rice. Add salt to taste (taste the water), then bring the rice and water to a boil, cooking for about 3 minutes at a boil while stirring the bottom of the pan. Lower the heat to low and cover, cooking for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave covered for 10 minutes more to finish cooking. Leave until you’re ready to serve.
4. Combine the lime zest & juice, sour cream and cilantro in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper.
5. Serve the beans over the rice, top with the sour cream-cilantro sauce, and garnish with cherry tomatoes, olives and tortilla chips.
Corn cake w/ scallions & cheese
1⁄2 cup butter, melted
1⁄4 cup water
2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
1 1⁄2 cups frozen whole-kernel corn, thawed
3⁄4 cup cornmeal
1 bunch scallions (green onions), sliced thinly
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 teaspoon baking powder
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, mix the wet ingredients together.
3. In a separate large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients. Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients to make a batter.
4. Pour batter into an ungreased 8x8 inch baking pan. Smooth batter and cover with aluminum foil. Place the pan into a 9x13 inch baking dish that is filled a third of the way with hot water.
5. Bake in the preheated 350 degree oven oven for 50 to 60 minutes. Allow to cool for 10 minutes. Use an ice cream scoop for easy removal from the pan.
Hand-shaped sopes w/ refried beans, roasted onion pico de gallo & cotija
Makes 24 sopes w/ filling
Roasted onion pico de gallo
2 onions, cut into half-julienne
Cooking oil, salt & pepper
3 large tomatoes, diced small
1 jalapeno or fresno pepper, minced
1⁄2 bunch cilantro
1 lime, zest & juice
3 cups masa harina
1 1⁄2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 1⁄2 cups hot water
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
1 large can refried beans
1 lb cotija cheese, crumbled
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss the onions, salt and pepper in a large bowl and roast in the oven on a sheet (cookie) pan for 15-20 minutes, until browned. Remove and allow to cool.
2. Combine all the rest of the pico de gallo ingredients with the onion. Taste for salt and season if necessary. Set aside.
3. Lower oven temperature to 350 degrees.
4. In another large bowl, whisk together the masa, baking powder and salt. Stir in the hot water until the mixture forms a soft dough. Let stand for 5 minutes, then mix in the egg, then the oil.
5. Prepare another sheet pan with parchment paper or spray with nonstick spray.
6. Roll 1⁄4 cup of the dough into a ball. Shape into a 3-inch disk and pinch a little raised rim around the edge. Repeat with the remaining dough.
7. Heat the refried beans up in a saucepan and season as desired. Thin with a little water if desired.
8. Bake for 10 minutes, or until the sopes start to look dry. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the center of each sope with the cotija cheese and bake for 5 minutes more.
9. Top each sope with beans and pico de gallo.
House-made chocolate truffles
Makes about 60 truffles, takes about 30 minutes all together of hands-on work plus 3 hours to chill
16 oz good dark chocolate chips
12⁄3 C heavy cream
1 t vanilla extract
1⁄2 t kosher salt (or smoked salt, for a twist)
1. Put the chocolate in a kitchen bowl.
2. Heat the cream over medium heat until it starts to simmer, then pour it over the chocolate. Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit for 10 minutes.
3. Uncover and whisk together the cream and chocolate until smooth, then stir in the vanilla and salt.
4. Transfer to a baking dish and cool to room temperature (about 15 minutes), then cover and refrigerate 3 hours.
5. Form the truffles by scooping the chocolate with a melon baller or teaspoon, coat your hands in powdered sugar and roll them into balls. You can then roll the truffles in chopped nuts if you want, roll in more powdered sugar or sprinkles, or decorate however you'd like. Enjoy!