Archive for Wednesday, March 12, 2003


March 12, 2003


The following recipes were provided by staff members of the Community Mercantile Co-op. Sula Teller, food service manager, provided the recipe for lentil salad with curry spices. The banana bread recipe was given by Alison Olewnick, baker, and the roasted corn bisque was provided by Tim Quillin, chef de cuisine.

Lentil Salad With Curry Spices


2 cups French green lentils or brown lentils*
2-3 pieces whole bay leaf
1 medium peeled small onion or 2-3 whole peeled shallot
Optional: 1 medium sized carrot, coarsely chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes or 1/8 teaspoon cayenne powder
1/4 teaspoon garam masala
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
Zest of one lemon
1/2 cup lemon and lime juices combined
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup diced scallion
1 cup fine diced red onion
1 red bell pepper finely diced
1 cup minced Italian parsley
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro

Wash the lentils, discarding any broken pieces. Place lentils in medium sized pot with plenty of cold water to cover. Add the bay leaf and the onion or shallots and carrot if using. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat so the lentils just simmer. Cook gently in order to maintain their pretty shape. Watch carefully, check after 15 to 20 minutes.

While the lentils are cooking, prepare the vegetables and mix the spices.

When lentils are cooked -- firm but not toothy -- drain them, pour into a large bowl and run plenty of cold water over them to cool, stirring gently. Drain again. Allow to sit so that lentils drain completely.

Place lentils in large bowl and sprinkle with olive oil, spices, citrus juices, scallion, onion, minced herbs. Mix gently, tossing to combine ingredients.

Enjoy with goat cheese, feta cheese and/or hard boiled eggs as a salad; as a base for grilled salmon or chicken; with grilled pita and labna; or with strained, whole milk yogurt.

Banana Bread


8 ounces soft (1/2 pound) butter
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 medium (over-ripe and soft) bananas

Combine flour, soda, salt. Set aside. Mash bananas. Cream softened butter with sugar on high speed. Add eggs, mix on medium speed until combined. Fold in flour mixture by hand. Add bananas. Mix just until well combined. Pour batter into well-greased loaf pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool to the touch before removing loaf from the pan. Makes one loaf.

Roasted Corn Bisque

10 cups of shelled, yellow sweet corn, either fresh, frozen or canned
8 cups rich vegetable stock
1 cup white wine
1 each, coarsely chopped roasted red and yellow onion
6 to 8 cloves garlic, roasted
3 large, coarsely chopped roasted sweet red peppers
4 medium, coarsely chopped roasted Anaheim peppers (or whole canned green chilies)
1/2 tablespoon Chipotle chilies, canned
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups heavy cream or sour cream
Scallions for garnish
3 tablespoons olive oil or butter

In a large stockpot over medium-high heat, bring stock and optional white wine to a boil. Cook at high for 5 minutes to cook off alcohol. Decrease heat to low and maintain at simmer. The stock will reduce to about 7 cups.

Toss the corn, onions and garlic with olive oil and a little nutmeg and place on a nonreactive baking sheet or roasting pan. If using fresh corn, sprinkle about 1/8 cup water over the vegetables. Roast at 300 to 350 degrees until the onion and garlic have softened and begin to caramelize a bit. The sweet corn will develop a deeper yellow color but it should not shrivel. Cool slightly, place in large stockpot together with any juices exuded by roasting.

Roast the peppers in a high oven (500) just to blister the skins; the flesh should remain firm. Remove from oven and place in a covered bowl to cool slightly. Remove skins. Chop coarsely. Add to stockpot with onions, garlic and corn.

Add wine to stockpot with corn, onion, garlic, and pepper mix. Cook high to reduce by one-half. Pour in stock. Simmer 5-10 minutes to develop flavors.

Add chipotles, crushed red pepper, cumin powder, nutmeg and salt and fresh-ground pepper. Remove about half of soup and puree. Return puree to pot. Remove about 4 cups of soup to large bowl. Slowly add cream or sour cream to soup, gently whisking all the while. Slowly pour into remaining soup in pot. Simmer on very low heat about 5 minutes to warm through. Correct seasonings. Serve with dice scallion and a dust of fresh grated nutmeg. Serves six to eight.

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