Trial and Error Weekend

I love a challenge. I enjoy trying new recipes on my family. They are a frank group. The five and two-year old boys are brutally honest. If they don’t like something, you know right now. I also like challenging the biggest skeptics; which usually involved my father in law. (By the way, his idea of a vegetable is canned corn).

I stumbled upon the website, http://happyherbivore.com/ this weekend. Several recipes looked interesting, but I wanted to test out the raisin biscuits first.

They were really easy to make and the family loved them. So much so, they disappeared that night. I knew my father in law was coming over on Saturday, so I made sure to make another batch and run it by him. I made the biscuit a bit more enticing with a fresh pot of coffee. If I can make the biggest skeptic happy, then they are a winner. And they were! Check out the site and the biscuit recipe (http://happyherbivore.com/recipe/raisin-biscuits/) No milk, butter, or eggs! These are a nice treat once in a while.

While my father in law was enjoying his biscuit, I worked on some baked onion rings and black bean patties for dinner. Not quite a greasy cheeseburger and onion rings from the local pub, but my arteries are thankful.

Just in case you were wondering….yeah they are that good. A little ketchup to dip them in and it’s heaven. They came out perfect on the first try. Even better!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound sweet onions
  • 3 egg whites
  •  1 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon italian seasoning

Directions

1. Cut onions into 1/2-in. slices; separate into rings and place in a bowl. Cover with water; soak in the fridge for 30 minutes. Drain.

2. In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg whites until foamy. In another bowl, combine the bread crumbs and italian seasoning. Divide the crumb mixture among three large resealable plastic bags. Dip a third of the onions in the egg whites; add a few rings at a time to crumb mixture and shake to coat. Place on a baking sheet coated with non-stick cooking spray.

3. Repeat with remaining onions and crumb mixture. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes or until lightly browned and crisp.

While the mostly vegetarian husband was working on the onion rings, I knocked out some black bean patties.

Ingredients

1 15 oz or approx. 2 c. of black beans, drained and rinsed (or thawed in my case)

1/2 green bell pepper, cut into 2 inch pieces

1/2 onion, cut into wedges

3 cloves garlic, peeled

1 egg

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon cumin

1 jalapeno de-seeded, finely chopped

1/2 cup bread crumbs

3 tablespoons of fresh cilantro, chopped

 Directions

1. In a food processor, finely chop bell pepper, onion, and garlic and 1/2 the beans.

2. In a small bowl, stir together egg, chili powder, cumin, and chili sauce.

3. Stir the bean mixture into the egg mixture. Mix in bread crumbs, cilantro, jalapeno and remaining beans until the mixture is sticky and holds together.

Drop heaping tablespoon sized dollops into a lightly oiled (non-stick) skillet. Cook at medium high heat for 2 -3 minutes per side.

Serve with guacamole and salsa.

Sometimes you cannot always have a winner. I tried a dish with tempeh, broccoli and white beans that did not impress me. My family did not complain, but I won’t be making it again. I also tried making a ‘chicken’ nugget recipe from http://happyherbivore.com/ and was also equally unmoved. Both recipes were time-consuming and not what I had hoped for. Oh well, trial and error. At least they didn’t cost much!

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