Breakfast Cereal

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Don't laugh. This is as good, and light, as any other puffed grain cereal. (I usually eat two bowls.) Use plain popcorn and really overfill the bowl because it loses a lot of volume when you pour on the milk.

Black Bean Soup with Coconut Rice

Monday, January 01, 2007

These days I am getting ready for a major household move, so my cooking is very focused on using up what is in the cupboards. The bean soup and coconut rice were both pretty good, B-side recipes that became marvellous when paired. If you are preparing them together, start the rice first - it takes a few minutes longer to cook.

For black bean soup: saute 1/4 head garlic (less if desired), and half a small onion with 1/2 tsp salt. Stir in 1.5 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock, 1 1/2 cup cooked black beans (can people should use a 14 oz can), and 1/2 cup canned crushed tomatoes, or two fresh. I added half a cup chopped deli ends that I had cooked with the beans; you could add a chipotle or 1 tsp of pimentón if you are avoiding meat to give the soup some depth. Bring all ingredients to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for about 20 minutes. Mash a few times to break down some of the beans, if desired, and taste for salt. Soup should be thick; you can add some water or more stock if desired. This is a good recipe for throwing in leftover corn, carrots, or other cooked vegetable.

I'd forgotten how good coconut rice can be - mild, rich and satisfying. Sharp eyed visitors will note a golden tinge - saffron. This extravagant seasoning is included in harmony with the frugal principle of using what you have on hand instead of buying new, so hopefully people will not call in to cancel their subscriptions. In any case, the saffron can be left out if you have none.To make coconut rice: 1 cup of short grain rice, 1 cup coconut milk, 1 2/3 cups of water, and 1/2 tsp of saffron dissolved in 2 tbs hot water. Bring to boil over medium heat, then simmer until rice is cooked.

Serve soup (serves 2 generously) with a scoop of rice (you will have extra) and a lime wedge, if available. (Or, decide that the rice is so good you eat a big pile of it with the thick soup more as a sauce...feeds 4, but not quite as healthy...)


Frugal Tip: No need to buy specialized popcorn for the microwave. Check out the post at Get Rich Slowly.

Easy on the Eyes: Found a site with beautiful food art while checking stats. I love how Klein paints light.