Tag Archives: sun-dried tomato

Linguine with Truffle-dried Tomatoes and Braised Cabbage

Linguine with Truffle-dried Tomatoes and Braised Cabbage

Weekly trip to the market.  Sale items: Giant cabbages, flats of very large ripe tomatoes, Washington state apples.   What do all these things have in common?  Well, combine them with linguine, peas and some rich truffle-infused salt, and you will know that this recipe is far better than the sum of its parts.  The parts take a little effort though, so have patience and you will be rewarded!

You will need to make some Truffle-dried Tomatoes and some Braised Cabbage with Washington Apples and Onions. Truffle salt imparts a very subtle richness to the tomatoes that really makes them special for anything they are used in. I use the salt in both the tomatoes and in the pasta water, and it truly changes the experience of this dish, so splurge if you can.  If not, you can replace with regular salt and you’ll still have a tasty entrée.  I’ve used a nice black truffle-infused salt that I buy in small quantities at my local Thriftway, but you can find it online at Amazon, Saltworks, and many other sources. I like to buy in small quantities for freshness and affordability, so look at your favorite specialty foods market.  Once you have these parts, you can quickly assemble this entrée for a cold autumn evening.  Serve with a nice glass of full-bodied red wine or pour some crisp non-alcoholic San Pellegrino Limonata in a beautiful glass and enjoy with your loved one.

Linguine with Truffle-dried Tomatoes and Braised Cabbage

1/2 lb. dried linguine
1-2 tsp. black truffle infused salt (or plain sea salt)
1/2 C sun-dried tomatoes or home-made truffle-dried tomatoes (about 24 pieces or 2 whole tomatoes, cut into 12 pieces each)
4 C braised cabbage with apples and onions, warm
1 C fresh or frozen peas
1 C toasted walnut pieces or textured vegetable protein
salt and pepper
Chopped fresh parsley for garnish

Bring a pot of truffle-salted water to a full boil.  Cook your pasta until al dente.  Add your peas during the last minute.  Remove from heat and drain, reserving about one cup of the pasta water.  In a large serving bowl, gently toss the pasta with the braised cabbage and dried tomatoes, adding the reserved pasta water as desired.  Test your seasoning, adding more truffle salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Garnish with toasted walnuts and parsley.  I sometimes offer a small dish of crunchy textured vegetable protein to sprinkle on top with a spoon for those that want a little more protein.  It adds a great crunch to the dish, but is optional.

Frieda’s Organic Polenta

This is a fantastic convenience food, and one that meets the no-fat vegan guidelines of Dr. Esselstyn’s Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease.  Frieda’s makes several flavors, including Sun-Dried Tomato & Garlic, Garlic & Basil, Mushroom & Onion, Green Chili & Cilantro, and Traditional.  You can buy this product in local supermarkets here in the Pacific Northwest, and online at Amazon.  It is worth a trip to Frieda’s own website, where they’ve got a nice searchable array of interesting new recipes that can be adapted for no oil, such as their Sauteed Vegetable Polenta  which I’ve adapted for this blog.   In any event, this is terrific stuff, and easy, affordable and convenient.

Vegetable Polenta with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Fresh Herbs

I have a wonderful friend who gifted me with a bursting bag of home-grown tomatoes every color in the rainbow.  Hoping to extend the bounty over time, I dried a thick layer of these little sugar disks overnight in my dehydrator, but ironically, the outcome was so delicious, sweet, succulent, that I had to wrap them into an amazing sauce and eat them all the very next day.  I discovered a great no-fat polenta; whipped up this fresh herb, sun-dried tomato ragu and garnished with a herb & garlic “creme”.  I really have to credit the amazingly sweet dried tomatoes with the huge flavor in this dish.  Frieda’s organic polenta is fabulous too.  Try it!!

Vegetable Polenta with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Fresh Herbs

1/2 C vegetable broth
1/2  red onion, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup sun-dried tomatoes, diced
1 large fresh tomato, diced
1 TBSP Carlita Fire Roasted Tomato Salsa
1 16-ounce package Frieda’s Polenta (Original, Sun Dried Tomato, or Wild Mushroom)

Minced green onions, chopped cilantro or Italian parsley for garnish

Simmer the first 8 ingredients for 15 minutes over medium low heat.  Slice the polenta in  1/4 inch slices and brown in a non-stick pan on medium high heat.   Spoon 1/2 C sauce onto each plate. Place 4 polenta slices on the sauce and garnish with garlic cream, minced green onion and chopped cilantro or Italian parsley.

Garlic creme

2 oz. firm or silken plain tofu
1 large clove garlic, peeled
1 TBSP fresh cilantro or parsley
1/4 C plain non-dairy milk (soy or rice)
Salt and pepper to taste

Process all ingredients in your food processor until the consistency of thick cream.  Serve with polenta.

Grilled Stuffed Portabello with Spinach, Garlic & Sun-dried Tomatoes

Grilled Portabello Stuffed with Spinach, Garlic, and Sun-dried Tomatoes

Grilling without fat is my new puzzle to solve for the summer. I’ve got a winner this week with my no-fat vegan stuffed Portabello.  The ingredients I’ve used are succulent, but the real trick with this one is to grill it over some natural mesquite wood charcoal.  There are a lot of whole hardwood lump charcoal brands available.  I used Best of the West Natural Mesquite Briquettes, which I got at Fred Meyer.  A small 8 Cup tower of them burned to “ready” in 20 minutes and lasted perfectly for my batch of 4 mushrooms.

This mushroom can certainly be done in the oven, but it is a whole different animal after spending 20 minutes intimately mingling with hardwood smoke on my Weber tabletop grill.  This recipe is an adaptation of one from the Weber’s Real Grilling cookbook.

Grilled Stuffed Portabello with Spinach, Garlic and Sun-dried Tomatoes

6-8 C Chopped fresh spinach
1/2 large sweet onion, chopped
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 C halved fresh cherry tomatoes
1/2 C water-packed or re-hydrated sun-dried tomatoes, drained
1 Tbsp. capers, drained and coarsely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
3 or 4 medium portabello mushrooms
2 C fresh bread crumbs (Dave’s Goodseed or your favorite no-oil vegan bread)
1 clove peeled garlic
4 Tbsp. chopped fresh Italian parsley or cilantro

Instructions

1. Prepare the grill.  Make a stack of charcoal, enough for a single layer under your mushrooms, and light.  After 20 minutes, the coals should be ready to spread out in a single layer under the grate.

2. Gently rinse the portabellos and remove the stems. With a spoon, scrape out the black gills and discard.  Marinate the caps for 15 minutes with a few splashes of seasoned rice vinegar or balsamic vinegar.

3. Make the filling in a saucepan.  Put the first 7 ingredients together and heat over medium heat, covered with a lid, until the onion is soft, stirring occasionally and adding a small  amount of water when necessary to keep from sticking or burning.

4. Prepare the breadcrumbs in the food processor.  I use 2 slices of bread and 2 peeled clove of garlic.  Process and toast at 350 degrees on a cookie sheet for 10 minutes.  Chop your fresh herbs and set aside with the breadcrumbs.

5. Grill your mushroom caps for 10 minutes on each side.  Remove from the grill and stuff each cap with your filling.  Return to the grill (which should now be on a low heat- maybe 300 to 325 degrees) for 15 to 20 minutes, closing the lid and allowing the wood smoke to mingle with the mushrooms.

6. Remove the cooked portabellos from the grill.  Cover each cap well with toasted breadcrumbs and sprinkle with chopped herbs.