Friday, January 29

Turkey Patty Melts

4 servings
Total cost: NY $6.42/10.21
Cost per sandwich: NY $1.60/2.55

Both Jersey natives*, the LBUH and I grew up hanging out in diners. When we saw Bill Telepan on the Today Show making an elevated version of the classic Jersey patty melt, it got us salivating, although the high levels of butter and red meat gave us pause. (Well, it gave me pause anyway, the LBUH would exist on nothing but an all bacon diet if I let him.)

Turkey Patty Melt
If you don’t know from patty melts, they’re like the perfect union of a grilled cheese and a hamburger. Tasty, yes? Here’s the less heavy version of Telepan’s patty melt that we cooked up.** You’ll notice that we put ketchup right in the meat mixture. We did this for two reasons: (1) turkey meat is less fatty than ground beef, so can get dried out on its own and (2) you shouldn’t be pulling apart a true patty melt to add in any condiments, as it should be partly melted together with the cheese, and partly precariously slippery from the caramelized onions. But in our opinion, its just not a burger without ketchup. OK fine, that’s just my opinion, the LBUH disagrees. But you’re with me, right?

Turkey Patty Melt
  • 2 tbsps olive oil (staple)
  • 3 tbsps butter, softened (staple)
  • 1 large onion (NY $0.79)
  • 8 slices rye bread (staple if you’ve got some/NY $3.79 for a whole loaf)
  • 6 slices reduced fat aged Swiss cheese (NY $1.64)
  • 1 lb. ground turkey (NY $3.99)
  • 4 tbsp ketchup (staple)
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard (staple)
  • ½ tsp paprika (staple)
  • ½ tsp cayenne (staple)
  • Salt (staple)
  • Pepper (staple)
Turkey Patty Melt

Slice onion thinly. Melt half a tablespoon butter in one tablespoon olive oil until lightly browned in a large skillet. (If your pan is dark, look for the yellow color of the butter to disappear.) And onion and cook over high heat for 5 minutes, then reduce heat to low, add a teaspoon of salt and continue cooking another 6-7 minutes, until onions are golden brown and translucent.

Turkey Patty Melt
Meanwhile, in a large bowl combine together turkey, ketchup, mustard, spices, and salt and pepper to taste. Form into four patties that are more oval-shaped than round. After the onions are done cooking, add another tbsp of olive oil to the pan and add patties. Cook for about 5 minutes per side over medium heat, or until juices run clear when you press down on the top of each patty with a spatula.

Turkey Patty Melt
While the patties cook, prep the sandwiches. Lay out 8 slices of bread. Top each slice with part a slice of cheese, cutting off the edge so that the cheese doesn’t extend beyond the edge of the bread. Lay the trimmings on the top of the next slice, starting the next slice of cheese after the reset of the trimmings. You’ll end up using about one and a half slices per sandwich.

Turkey Patty Melt
* The LBUH even grew up down tha shourah.

** You’ll note that even though this is lighter version, this is still far from “diet” food. I shudder to think what the fat/calorie content must have been on the version made on the Today Show; I think Telepan glopped about 2 tbsps of butter on each slice of bread. (You’ll note that his recipe literally directs one to “slather” the butter on the bread. Gross.) These make pretty hefty quarter-pound sandwiches. If you like, you could easily make 6 patties out of the meat, or only use one slice of cheese per sandwich.

Turkey Patty Melt
Nutritional Info
Amount Per Serving
Calories 633.4Vitamin A 15.5 %Iron 23.7 %
Total Fat 34.9 gVitamin B-12 0.2 %Magnesium 8.3 %
Cholesterol 133.3 mgVitamin B-6 5.4 % Manganese 33.6 %
Sodium 1,519.4 mgVitamin C 5.3 %Niacin 12.8 %
Potassium 194.3 mgVitamin D 0.0 %Phosphorus 9.9 %
Total Carbohydrate 40.8 gVitamin E 6.5 %Riboflavin 13.8 %
Fiber 4.9 gCalcium 44.0 %Selenium 28.8 %
Sugars 5.5 gCopper 8.2 %Thiamin 19.8 %
Protein 40.4 gFolate 15.7 %Zinc 5.6 %

Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump

Wednesday, January 27

Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread

24 servings
Total Cost: NY $8.66
Cost per serving: NY $0.24

Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread
So last week’s Great Chocolate Avocado Brownie Experiment got us thinking: what if you used avocado in place of some of the oil or butter in something with flavors that would make for a less counter-intuitive pairing with avocado*? Like, say, a southwestern jalapeno corn bread? If you’ll excuse me for saying so, Eureka! This corn bread is exceptionally moist, zesty with the peppers and scallions, lightly sweet from the honey and thick with sour cream. The avocado is not particularly noticeable on its own, but the taste definitely adds some depth of flavor, in a “what is that mystery ingredient I can’t quite place?” kind of way. Goes great with turkey chili!

Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread
  • 2 cups cornmeal (NY $0.38)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour (NY $0.23)
  • 1 cup all purpose flour (NY $0.20)
  • 1 tablespoon salt (staple)
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder (staple)
  • 4 eggs (NY $0.66)
  • 1 cup milk (NY $0.27)
  • 1 cup reduced-fat sour cream (NY $1.09)
  • 1/3 cup honey (NY $1.13)
  • 4 tbsps butter (NY $0.38)
  • 1 avocado (NY $1.50)
  • 1 10 oz package frozen corn, thawed (NY $1.19)
  • 1 bunch scallions (NY $0.99)
  • 2 jalapeno peppers (NY $0.64)
Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.** Lightly grease a 9 x 13 inch pan with butter. Dice the jalapeno peppers, using your knife to scrape out the seeds. Slice the thinly scallions, retaining both the dark green and white parts. (No need to discard anything but the tiny roots!)

Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread
In a large bowl, stir together the cornmeal, flours, salt and baking powder. In a food processor, combine eggs, milk, sour cream, honey, butter, and avocado. Pulse until thoroughly blended, scraping down the sides with a spatula to make sure that all hunks of avocado are broked down and incorporated into the mixture. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry ingredients, and whisk until smooth and thoroughly blended. Fold in the corn, scallions and peppers with a spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until gold brown, about 35 minutes. Let cool before slicing into squares.

Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread
* Although counter to my own intuition, that is, we’ve been informed that chocolate and avocado is actually a common and delicious Indonesian pairing. Fascinating! Thanks, Chef Aimee!

** Or, if you’re using the crappy oven in our rental, preheat for one hour at 450 degrees, open oven long enough to put corn bread and watch temperature on thermometer drop back down to 375, and set temperature to 400 degrees. Check oven thermometer every 10 minutes, raising temperature back up to 425 degrees if needed. Optional: copious swearing and calls to landlord.

Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread
Nutritional Info
Amount Per Serving

Calories 152.6Vitamin A 5.1 %Iron 6.3 %
Total Fat 5.7 gVitamin B-12 1.9 %Magnesium 7.0 %
Cholesterol 44.5 mgVitamin B-6 5.0 %Manganese 16.1 %
Sodium 335.6 mgVitamin C 4.8 % Niacin 6.6 %
Potassium 150.0 mgVitamin D 1.1 %Phosphorus 8.5 %
Total Carbohydrate 22.8 gVitamin E 2.1 %Riboflavin 8.2 %
Fiber 2.3 gCalcium 2.2 %Selenium 14.1 %
Sugars 4.1 gCopper 3.7 %
Protein 3.9 gFolate 8.4 %
Jalapeno, Scallion and Avocado Corn Bread

Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump

Monday, January 25

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili

10 servings
Total cost: NY $18.79
Cost per serving: NY $1.88

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili
Everyone needs a good turkey chili recipe in their repertoire, particularly during the dark days of January. This one has some zing to it; if you like it milder, knock it back down to 1 chipotle pepper. In furtherance of my continued quest to break free from the tyranny of commercial broths, this recipe calls for no broth whatsoever. This makes a lot, but like most chilis, it improves with age as the flavors meld and freezes well to boot.

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili
  • 2 tbsps olive oil (staple)
  • 2 cloves garlic (NY $0.31 for one head)
  • 1 large yellow onion (NY $1.26)
  • 1 green pepper (NY $1.89)
  • 1 red pepper (NY $2.15)
  • 1 pound ground turkey (NY $5.99)
  • 2 tbsps chili powder (staple)
  • 1 tsp cumin (staple)
  • ½ tsp oregano (staple)
  • ½ tsp hot paprika (staple)
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder (staple)
  • 1 14.5 oz can kidney beans (NY $0.89)
  • 1 14.5 oz can pinto beans (NY $0.89)
  • 2 chipotles en adobo (NY $2.19 for one can*)
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes (NY $1.89)
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar (staple)
  • 1 bottle cerveza (NY $1.33)
  • 1 bunch scallions (NY $0.99) (optional**)
Spicy Turkey Bean Chili

Start this one about an hour before you plan to eat.

Mince the garlic, and chop the onion, green pepper and red pepper.

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili
Warm 2 tbsps olive oil in a large pot, and saute the chopped vegetables about 5 minutes until softened. Add the ground turkey, spices and cocoa powder. Continue cooking, stirring to break up the meat, until the turkey is browned, about another 5 minutes. Meanwhile, chop the chipotles. Once turkey is no longer pink, stir in the drained and rinsed beans, the chipotle, crushed tomatoes, vinegar and beer.

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, approximately 30 minutes longer.

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili
* When you have leftover chipotles, which you inevitably will b/c I’ve yet to see a recipe that calls for an ENTIRE can (and my lips burn just thinking about it!), freeze the excess.

** You can, of course, garnish this with any number of things, according to taste and the contents of your fridge. Diced tomatoes, sour cream, chopped red onions, sour cream, avocado, tortilla chips, shredded monterey jack, diced jalapenos for the truly bold, etc., etc. We happen to like scallions, and we didn’t want to leave all toppings out of the pricing for this recipe, because half the fun of chili is the make-your-sundae-style garnishing.

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili
Nutritional Info
Amount Per Serving
Calories 220.7Vitamin A 32.8 %Iron 17.8 %
Total Fat 6.8 gVitamin B-12 0.0 %Magnesium 11.9 %
Cholesterol 32.0 mgVitamin B-6 11.6 %Manganese 23.7 %
Sodium 329.6 mgVitamin C 79.3 %Niacin 3.9 %
Potassium 457.6 mgVitamin D 0.0 %Phosphorus 13.0 %
Total Carbohydrate 24.2 gVitamin E 3.1 %Riboflavin 6.9 %
Fiber 8.3 gCalcium 5.6 %Selenium 5.1 %
Sugars 1.0 gCopper 11.9 %Thiamin 10.7 %
Protein 15.6 gFolate 26.3 %Zinc 5.9 %

Spicy Turkey Bean Chili

Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump

Friday, January 15

Healthy Brownies: Not a Joke

24 brownies
Total cost: NY $9.34
Cost per brownie: NY $0.39




Well, mostly.

Healthy Brownies
This recipe comes from Dave Lieberman and Anahad O’Connor’s new book, 10 Things You Need to Eat.* We were intrigued by the “Chocolate Avocado Brownie” recipe, and wanted to give it a shot. Which we have now done, twice, the first as written and the second with some tweaks for pricing and taste. The recipe for our tweaked version appears below. The resulting product is chocolate-y and palatable and doesn’t taste at all of avocados, but it’s not really what I think of when I think Brownie. It’s more what I think of when I think Lightly Sweet Chewy Chocolate Bread. (What, I do that frequently, don't you?) Stirring in some chocolate chips might make these more brownie-esque, although of course that takes away from the “healthy”.

Healthy Brownies
I think these are worth making if you’re interested in a sweet chocolate snack, but I wouldn’t serve them as dessert. Not to ratchet your expectations too far downwards: make no mistake, we ate all of these and enjoyed them! Just know that what you’re biting into is going to be more like a chocolate Luna or granola bar type thing than it is a decadent chocolate dessert. If you try these—and I know you can’t wait after a build up like that—please let us know what you think, and if you come up with any adaptations of your own!

Healthy BrowniesIngredients
  • ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour (NY $0.13)
  • ½ cup Dutch-process cocoa (NY $0.51)
  • ½ teaspoon salt (staple)
  • 1/2 cup almonds (NY $1.17)
  • ½ cup walnuts (NY $0.99)
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (NY $2.99)
  • ½ canola oil (NY $0.42)
  • 1 large ripe Hass avocado (NY $1.50)
  • 6 eggs (NY $0.93)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar (NY $0.28)
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar (NY $0.42)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 13 glass baking dish with parchment and grease.

Whisk together the flour, cocoa and salt in a mixing bowl.

Healthy Brownies
In your food processor, grind nuts until roughly chopped. Careful, this will go quick. Be sure not to overdo it, you want your nuts to be hunks in the finished brownies, not turn into nut meal. Stir chopped nuts into flour mixture.

Add the chocolate to the food processor in pieces, and pulse until coarsely chopped. Stir into flour nut mixture.

Healthy Brownies
Wipe out the food processor bowl, then add the oil, avocado, eggs and sugar and process until smooth. Scrape down the sides to make sure that all the avocado hunks are whipped smooth. Now you've got yourself some unappetizing greenish goop. Don't worry, I promise this is going to turn out OK. And if you don't trust me, trust Dave Lieberman.

So, take the leap of faith and, using a spatula, transfer your greenish goop into the chocolate flour mixture. Gently fold together until combined.

Healthy Brownies
Pour the batter (doesn't look green any more, now does it?) into the baking dish. Bake for approx. 30-35 minutes, until the center is just set. Let cool before slicing. Take a bite, and tell us what you think!

Adapted from 10 Things You Need to Eat

Healthy Brownies
* Full disclosure: we got a review copy of this book free when the LBUH attended a promotional event for Dave Lieberman. In the viewpoint of the FTC when we, as amateur bloggers, get something for free, our independent judgment and any ethics we might possess go flying right out the window, we dance around our kitchen maniacally cheering “Free! Free! Free! Let us go shill for it unreservedly and in direct violation of our own honest feelings about the item in question!” and rush off to the computer to tell you to go out and buy it immediately because it will complete your life, make you taller, thinner, grow your hair back and imbue you with the ability to fly. Unless, of course, we are forced to tell you the readers about it, in which case you, the readers, are to think “Aha! They were given this item to review for FREE! Accordingly, this item cannot possibly possess all of these positive attributes extolled by these blatantly biased and uncritical bloggers! In fact, it will probably make me less fulfilled, shorter, fatter, and balder, though I suspect it will still give me the ability to fly!”

In short, the new FTC blog guidelines don’t really give bloggers or their readers much credit at all and, although I understand their goals and am aware of the bad sites out there they are trying to curtail, I find them both somewhat offensive and also vague enough that they don’t give much actual guidance. Or, for other, sharper, smarter words, see: Janet Reid’s FTC Compliance Notice. When you read reviews of this same cookbook in a magazine, you can be sure the reviewer didn’t run off and buy a copy, but the FTC doesn’t think that they need to tell you about it. Yet because I am not Gwyneth Paltrow, more's the pity, I apparently do.

Additionally, please see the note about our Amazon store that we have added to our "About REC(ession)IPES" section.

Healthy Brownies
Nutritional Info
Amount Per Serving

Calories 183.5Vitamin A 1.8 %Iron 7.1 %
Total Fat 11.2 gVitamin B-12 2.1 %Magnesium 7.3 %
Cholesterol 53.1 mgVitamin B-6 2.8 %Manganese 15.4 %
Sodium 68.9 mgVitamin C 1.1 %Niacin 2.5 %
Potassium 149.7 mgVitamin D 1.6 %Phosphorus 6.9 %
Total Carbohydrate 19.8 gVitamin E 11.2 %Riboflavin 6.9 %
Fiber 2.2 gCalcium 2.8 %Selenium 8.9 %
Sugars 5.7 gCopper 8.1 %Thiamin 2.4 %
Protein 3.6 gFolate 3.8 %Zinc 3.5 %

Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump

Tuesday, January 12

Mmmmmm Moussaka

12 servings
Total cost: NY $ 21.26
Cost per serving: NY $1.77

It’s the time of year when you don’t mind having the oven on for hours, and having an all day kitchen project to occupy your time saves you from having to venture out into the frostbitten world.* Yet its also the beginning of January, a time when it seems almost everyone I know--and I think this says something about the ages and accompanying plunging metabolic rates of my intimates--is pledging themselves to a new diet, a new gym routine, or just “eating better” in general. Hmm, how to harmonize these two seemingly disparate impulses? Enter this moussaka.

A moussaka is something like a Greek version of lasagna, but with thin layers of eggplant instead of pasta. Hey, what’s that? It uses vegetables in place of white carbs? Eureka! A traditional moussaka recipe will call for lots of egg yolks and ground meats; this rendition eases up on both, making it kinder to both your wallet and your waistline. Don’t worry though, it still takes positively ages to make, and requires having the oven cranked on for most of it. (Well, if your oven is anything like the crappy one in our rental apartment that, though tiny, still takes almost an hour to preheat and steadfastly refuses to admit that temperatures between 425 and 325 exist, thus requiring constant toggling back and forth between temps to even approximate a steady 350 or 400 degree temperature. But I digress.) Accordingly, I submit to you that this moussaka, which will fill your kitchen with heady warming aromas and satisfy your cravings for stick to your ribs foodstuffs, is the perfect recipe for deepest January.

  • 4 eggplants (NY $7.68)
  • Salt (staple)
  • 5 tbsps olive oil (staple)
  • 3 cloves garlic (NY $0.29 for one head)
  • 1 large onion (NY $1.16)
  • 1 pound ground lamb (NY $5.99)
  • 1 tsp oregano (staple)
  • ½ tsp cinnamon (staple)
  • ½ tsp all spice (staple)
  • 1/3 cup minced fresh parsley (NY $1.16 for one bunch)
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce (staple)
  • 2 tbsps tomato paste (staple)
  • 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (NY $1.19)
  • 4 tbsps butter (NY $0.51)
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour (NY $0.10)
  • 2 ½ cups milk (staple, we used 1%)
  • ½ tsp nutmeg (staple)
  • Salt (staple)
  • White Pepper (staple)
  • 1 egg (NY $0.15)
  • 1 egg yolk (NY $0.15)
  • 8 oz. feta cheese (NY $2.88)
  • 3 tbsps parmesan cheese (staple)

I’ll tell you upfront that this is going to take awhile: you’ll want to start well in advance of when you actually anticipate eating. Slice the eggplant lengthwise into 1/8 in to ¼ in thick slices, making sure to maintain even thickness. Salt and let stand about 45 minutes, then rinse. Tossing the slices into a colander works well for this. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350.

Pat eggplant slices dry, brush lightly with olive oil, and lay on baking sheets. Bake, in batches if need be, about 30 minutes. If your eggplant slices, despite your best efforts, end up varying in size, cook ones of about the same thickness at the same time, so you can remove them sooner or give them a bit more time depending on whether they’re thinner or thicker. Remove from baking sheets and set aside to cool. Just pile them up on a plate or in a deep bowl.

While eggplants are in the oven, cook the meat sauce layer. Mince the garlic and finely chop the onion, and cook in 1 tbsp of olive oil until fragrant and slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Add lamb and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes longer. Stir in oregano, cinnamon, all spice, parsley, Worcestershire, tomato paste and diced tomatoes. Cook uncovered until liquid has reduced by about 2/3rds, about 15 minutes. Cover and set aside while you prepare the next layer.

To prepare the béchamel layer, put milk in a small pot to warm. Melt butter in a larger pot, then add the flour, stirring vigorously, until well combined. Toast over low heat, stirring continuously, for about a minute. Remove the pot containing the butter/flour mixture from heat. Slowing add in the warmed milk, whisking to combine. You’ll get a bit of a work-out here (go ahead, count it towards that exercise resolution goal) as you need to whisk vigorously, and the béchamel is going to start to thicken up and fight back. Stay strong and have at it, you don’t want to let any lumps develop. Once you’ve got your thickened, smooth white sauce, whisk in the egg and egg yolk. Step back and admire the sunny lemony color of your completed béchamel.

And now for the assembly! (Some time will have passed at this point, and your kitchen should be nice and toasty warm at this point. Then again, so will you.) You can enlist a helper at this point if you feel like sharing the fun. If your idea of a helper needs to be opened with a corkscrew, I, for one, won’t judge. And if you own a dog, you’ll probably find that you have at least one volunteer poking curiously around the kitchen trying to find out where all the meaty-milky-eggy-eggplanty smells are coming from. Apparently, dogs dig eggplant. Who knew?

In a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish, lay down a layer of eggplant, just like you would if you were making a lasagna. Spoon some of the lamb mixture on top, followed by a layer of the béchamel. Crumble some of the feta on top of the béchamel, then grate about a tablespoon of parmesan across the top. Repeat! Once you get to the top of the dish, put down a deep layer of meat sauce, lay eggplant slices a top, then end with a thick layer of béchamel topped with the cheeses.

Bake, uncovered, until lightly browned on top, about 1 hour. Put your feet up while you wait, sip some of your “helper” if you like, and let someone else tackle the dishes. Once the moussaka comes out of the oven, let sit about 20 minutes before cutting and serving. Then, if you’re actually eating before 10 pm, pat yourself on the back.**

* Particularly if you have a LBUH to make the grocery shopping excursions for you. Heh heh.

** Or, have someone else do it for you, and make that “pat” into a “rub”. That was a lot of knifing and whisking!

Nutritional Info
Amount Per Serving

Calories 365.3Vitamin A 17.7 %Iron 11.4 %
Total Fat 24.5 gVitamin B-12 25.1 %Magnesium 11.9 %
Cholesterol 93.1 mgVitamin B-6 16.7 %Manganese 17.2 %
Sodium 2,734.4 mgVitamin C 16.5 %Niacin 20.0 %
Potassium 638.1 mgVitamin D 7.5 %Phosphorus 24.6 %
Total Carbohydrate 23.0 gVitamin E 5.8 %Riboflavin 27.2 %
Fiber 5.9 gCalcium 21.5 %Selenium 23.7 %
Sugars 4.6 gCopper 8.9 %Thiamin 15.2 %
Protein 15.0 gFolate 16.8 %Zinc 16.8 %

Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump

Wednesday, January 6

Resolution-Friendly Banana Bread

12 servings
Total cost: NY $ 2.20/ 3.93
Cost per serving: NY $0.18/0.32

Resolution-Friendly Banana Bread
Banana bread is one of those great traditional budget recipes, as its an excellent way to use up bananas that are too far gone to just eat by themselves. This iteration goes easy on the oil, using buttermilk in its place, and calls for part whole wheat pastry flour. (Don’t be tempted to use regular whole wheat flour instead of pastry, as its too heavy for this light loaf, and you’d end up sifting out all the grains anyway.) This bread has all the delicious fragrance and warmth of the original, yet with a lot less oil and fat, so it doesn’t involve blowing your New Year’s resolutions. (We’ve got at least another week or two before we start giving up on those, right?)

Resolution-Friendly Banana Bread
  • 2 large eggs (NY $0.31)
  • ¾ cup sugar (NY $0.42)
  • 4 very ripe to overripe bananas (NY $0.89)
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk (NY $0.16/ NY $1.89 for a quart)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil (staple)
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract (staple)
  • 1 cup all purpose flour (NY $0.21)
  • ¾ cup whole wheat pastry flour (NY $0.21)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (staple)
  • 1/8 tsp all spice (staple)
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg (staple)
  • ½ tsp salt (staple)
  • 2 tsp baking powder (staple)
  • ½ tsp baking soda (staple)
Resolution-Friendly Banana Bread


Preheat over to 325. Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and dust with flour. Mash the bananas in a small bowl with a fork. Beat eggs and sugar with an electric mixer until thick, about 4 minutes. Add bananas, buttermilk, oil and vanilla extract and mix again until well combined, about 1 minute. Sift in remaining dry ingredients, and beat until blended, about 2 more minutes. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.

Bake about 1 hour, or until golden brown on top and fork inserted in center comes out clean. Turn out onto rack and let cool. Slice and enjoy!

Resolution-Friendly Banana Bread
Adapted from Bon Appetit, August 1997

Nutritional Info
Amount Per Serving

Calories 179.3Protein 3.9 gMagnesium 6.4 %
Total Fat 2.6 gVitamin A 1.9 %Manganese 22.7 %
Saturated Fat 0.6 gVitamin B-12 1.6 %Niacin 6.6 %
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.4 gVitamin B-6 13.6 %Pantothenic Acid 3.4 %
Monounsaturated Fat 1.3 gVitamin C 6.1 %Phosphorus 7.9 %
Cholesterol 41.1 mgVitamin D 1.3 %Riboflavin 9.4 %
Sodium 243.9 mgVitamin E 2.2 %Selenium 17.6 %
Potassium 212.2 mgCalcium 5.9 %Thiamin 9.3 %
Total Carbohydrate 36.1 gCopper 4.4 %Zinc 3.1 %
Dietary Fiber 2.2 gFolate 8.6 %
Sugars 17.6 gIron 6.7 %

Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump

Monday, January 4

Poll: How YOU Doin’?

Happy New YearSo we’re into another decade, and despite reports that the recession is easing up, from where I sit it still looks grim. The LBUH is still the LBUH, although the “U” now stands for “under-employed” instead of “unemployed”, as he’s been picking up a lot of free lance work, including from one of his former employers. Blondie is still without full-time employment, although she’s picked up some contract work to tide her over as well.* So, we’re holding steady over here at Rec(ession)ipes, and bracing ourselves for a longer haul. But what about YOU, dear readers? How are you holding up? What impact is the Great Recession having on you?

* So that’s two unemployed people in my own inner circle who nonetheless don’t get reported in those “unemployment” numbers you keep hearing about. Everyone seems to acknowledget that there are large quantities of people that aren't reflected in these reports, but I find it frustrating that there still doesn’t seem to be any effort to capture the information (such as people who give up looking, or no longer qualify for unemployment, etc.) that all acknowledge isn’t reflected. I think the actual number of people who are scraping by with part-time sporadic work that doesn't provide them with health insurance or other benefits is probably extremely large and worth more than an "oh yeah, we're not counting those people" footnote.
Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump

Friday, January 1

Hoppin’ John

10 Servings
Total cost NY $ 12.17
Cost per serving NY $ 1.22

Hoppin’ John
Welcome 2010! Hoppin’ John is a traditional Southern dish that, if eaten at the beginning of the New Year, is supposed to bring good luck in the coming year. Well, we can all use a little bit of THAT in the coming year, yes? So, sayonara 2009! Here’s your hat, what’s your hurry? Dig into some of this tasty bean dish, and lift your fork to a healthier and happier New Year for all!*

Hoppin’ John
And, if we keep eating dishes that are this budget-friendly, it can’t help but be a more prosperous one. This recipe, unlike more modern iterations of this dish, goes old school and calls for water instead of stock. I often find myself annoyed by the over-reliance on chicken and vegetable stock in recipes these days. Yes, it adds flavor, but unless you’re making your own (and frankly, I doubt most home cooks do this) you’re jacking up the cost, in some cases needlessly. And some of the commercial stocks end up being little more than salted water with strange chemicals, mysterious ingredients and a ton of sodium. So this recipe uses just plain old water, from the tap. I hope you’ll agree that it still has plenty of flavor.

Hoppin’ John
  • 1 lb dried black eyed peas (NY $1.79)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil (staple)
  • 1 turkey kielbasa sausage (NY $5.79)
  • 1 yellow onion (NY $0.79)
  • 1 green pepper (NY $0.83)
  • 3 stalks celery (NY $1.39 for one bunch)
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (such as Tabasco) (staple)
  • 1 tsp dried thyme (staple)
  • 1 bay leaf (staple)
  • 3 cups water (staple)
  • ½ cup chopped parsley (NY $0.79 for one bunch)
  • 1 bunch scallions (NY $0.79)
  • Salt and pepper (staple)
Hoppin’ John

Soak beans overnight, or using the quick soak method.

Slice kielbasa into coins, and chop onion, pepper and celery.

Hoppin’ John
Rinse out the pot you soaked the beans in, and warm olive oil over medium heat until fragrant. Sear kielbasa until beginning to brown, about 3 minutes, then add chopped vegetables. Continue cooking another 5 minutes or so, until vegetables have softened slightly. Add soaked beans along with thyme, bay leaf, hot sauce and water.

Hoppin’ John
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low and continue cooking stirring occasionally about 40 minutes longer, or until beans softened and are creamy and tender. Add scallions and parsley, and continue cooking about 2 minutes longer. Season to taste. Serve over rice and, if desired, garnish with additional parsley and hot sauce.

Hoppin’ John
* Speaking of healthier . . . you may have been wondering where we’ve been all these months. Without going into too much details, I’ve been having some health issues that had me on a very restricted bland food diet for awhile there. (The LBUH has taken to calling himself “for poorer” and me “in sickness.) All of which made running a food blog pretty challenging. Unless, that is, you’d be interested in reading recipes like “Boil egg noodles in water according to package directions. Optional: garnish with salt.” No? I didn’t think so.

Hoppin’ John
Nutritional Facts
Calories 213.1Sugars 5.2 gFolate 4.1 %
Total Fat 7.4 gProtein 6.8 gIron 11.9 %
Saturated Fat 2.6 gVitamin A 28.2 %Magnesium 2.0 %
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2 gVitamin B-12 0.0 %Manganese 5.0 %
Monounsaturated Fat 1.0 gVitamin B-6 3.5 %Niacin 1.0 %
Cholesterol 7.5 mgVitamin C 33.7 %Phosphorus 1.6 %
Sodium 408.1 mgVitamin D 0.0 %Riboflavin 1.3 %
Potassium 121.1 mgVitamin E 1.9 %Selenium 0.4 %
Total Carbohydrate 31.5 gCalcium 18.8 %Thiamin 1.8 %
Fiber 7.5 gCopper 1.9 %Zinc 0.8 %

Recipe and Nutritional Information after the jump
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