Friday, March 13, 2009

Bobby Flay, Experiment 1

I LOVE Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill cookbook. Every sauce or dressing is already vegan or easily made vegan and their flavors are amazing. We went to grocery and randomly picked up an assortment of produce and grains, and I decided to make a stuffed bell pepper. Then, I found two recipes for sauces in Flay's cookbook that complimented the bell peppers very well. Trying these recipes out really saddened me, though, that Flay wasn't a part of Great Chefs Cook Vegan. They're so delicious and easily translated into a vegan meal.

[[Stuffed Bell Peppers]]

- 1 1/2 cup wild rice
- 4 Red Bell Peppers
- EVO for cooking
- 1/2 white onion sliced into rings
- 1-2 tsp. garlic
- 1 package of smart ground
- 1-2 tsp. cumin
- 1-2 paprika
- salt and pepper to taste
- chili powder to taste, I used about 1 tsp.
- 1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
** Preheat oven to 350 F.

** Cook rice per package instructions. Heat 1 Tbs. oil, cook onions and garlic, about 3-5 minutes. When onions are soft and translucent, add defrosted smart ground. Cook 5-10 minutes. Add spices: cumin, paprika, and chili powder. Add rice to pan and cook with "meat" and onions/garlic. Add a little more oil if necessary. Cook for 5-10 more minutes, salt and pepper.

** To prep the bell peppers: cut the stem and top off, and remove insides. Add to salted boiling water, boil until color darkens, about 5 minutes each. Remove, dry, and lightly coat the inside with EVO.

** Place peppers in deep casserole dish and stuff/pack peppers with rice combination. Bake 15-20 minutes. Remove and cool.


[[Blistered Serrano Hot Sauce]]
Adapted from Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill Cookbook. The original recipe called for honey and rice wine vinegar. I've never been able to find rice wine vinegar, so I just subbed white wine vinegar and it worked out well. You can use rice wine vinegar, though. Also, I subbed agave nectar for honey. Agave nectar is a sweet sap from a succulent, related to the Aloe Vera plant and it works great in replacing honey.

- 1 small red onion, coarsely chopped
- 10 serrano chilies, cut in half
- 1/4 cup, plus 2 Tbs. canola oil
- kosher salt
- 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 Tbs. dark agave nectar

** Preheat the over 450 F.

** Combine the onion and serranos in a small baking dish, toss with 2 Tbs. canola oil, and season with salt. Roast in oven until onions are soft and serranos are golden brown and blistered, 15-20 minutes.

** Transfer mixture to blender, add vinegar, cilantro, agave nectar, and salt to taste. With blender running slowly, add oil until emulsified.

** You can refrigerate this for up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.


[[Cilantro Oil]]

This is exactly the same as Bobby Flay's recipe. It's really good. And vegan.

- 1 1/2 cups canola oil
- 1 cup fresh packed cilantro leaves [[stems included]]
- 10 fresh spinach leaves
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

** Blend all ingredients for 5 minutes. Strain through fine mesh strainer. [[Don't press solids, it will make it cloudy]] I didn't have a fine mesh strainer, unfortunately, so I used a flour sifter and it work out really, really well. I know, so ghetto. :)

** Serve at room temperature, refrigerate for up to 2 days.


There isn't much sauce in the picture, because it looks nicer, but we went ahead and added a bunch more. We kept two bowls at the table and replenished our plate when we ran out. It was like a side dip. All in all, it was really delicious and I recommend you give it a try.

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