Saturday, September 25, 2010

Graduation lunch for the parents

Well, I didn't go through the graduation ceremony yet because it's in may, but I finished all my chores, tests and papers for my Bs.c (in Biology) and I owe a lot of it to my parents who not only paid my tuition for two of the four years, but also helped me financially between jobs and in difficult semesters and generally were very supportive and helpful. So I threw them a festive lunch!
The lunch had three courses of my creation and included the following dishes

First course: Simple Med Salad

Ingredients: for three people
2 medium tomatoes
1 cucumber
1 bell pepper (preferably yellow or red)
1 carrot
10 green olives
1 1/2 handful of cranberries or pomegranate seeds (that's what I used)
1/2 glass of a mixture of sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 flat teaspoon of salt
3/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 round tablespoon crushed garlic

How to:
chop, drop and roll ha ha! The seed mix should be added last and mixed into the rest of the salad just before people start eating or they'd soak the liquid and lose their crunch

Second course: 'meatloaf’ quiche

This one took me a little longer to make because I have the tiniest blender but with a sanely-sized one you'll be fine. The meatloaf mixture turned out to be A LOT so either use this recipe for a big meal or freeze the leftover mix for any other uses. I'm planning on using mine for a taco night with some friends :)

6-5 medium potatoes
300gr black beans, sprouted (they were 300gr before sprouting...)
100gr shiitake mushrooms
1 large onion
2 bags of Mozzarella Chreese Sauce Mix (or any odd hard 'cheese' you can find as long as it's thinly sliced)
100gr walnuts
3 tablespoons wheat gluten
400ml water
10 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 bottle of Liquid Smoke
5 cloves of garlic sliced
2 teaspoons salt
4 tablespoons white cooking wine
1 teaspoon cumin

How to:
If shiitake are dry, soak them in hot water while pealing potatoes. cut potatoes in half and cook them until they're no longer starchy but not mushy yet. Slice them into 1cm thick slices.
Cook beans while chopping shiitake and onion. Lightly sauté shiitake and onion in 3 of the canola oil tablespoons and 3 of the Liquid Smoke and mix until onions are soft and slightly golden. Pre-heat over to 180c
smash walnuts into pieces and when the beans are ready, add the onions, shiitake, nuts and remaining spices to the beans, mix and start blending. Taste the blended mix and make sure it acquired a rich, meaty flavor, if not, correct spicing.
Take your quiche dish (it rhymes!!)of choice (I've got English cake ones but a wider glass dish would do great) and, unless it's a non-stick surface, lightly oil it with canola oil. Tile the bottom with the potato slices and above them, spread the meatloaf mix, then another layer of potatoes and another of mix etc. preferably ending with a layer of potatoes.
Prepare the Chreese sauce and pour it over the top layer. If using other hard "cheeses" then sprinkle or cover top layer of quiche with slices of the "cheese". You can also make the quiche a potato-meatloaf-cheese arrangement, as you please.
Stick in over for 30-45 minutes, sticking a toothpick after 30 minutes to see if deeper layers are dry enough already.

Dessert: Heavenly pudding

This is a very filling dessert and extremely tasty!

Ingredients: for each person dining!
4 teaspoons of chia seeds
1 nice and ripe banana
handful of pecans
5 dates of majhul or halawi kind, pitted
1/2 glass vanilla flavored soy milk or coconut milk
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

How to:
An hour before making the pudding, soak chia seeds in the milk. place ingredients in mixer and mix one by one, starting with the nuts and dates. The ingredients should be mixed alone, be persistent with the dates. Pour all the ingredients, including chia mix and cinnamon into bowl and mix thoroughly. If you want it to be really jell-like, you can stick it in the refrigerator for until served.

The parents were very pleased and very, very full from their meal. Thanks mom and dad!

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