Black Bean Quesedillas
Torta Rustica
Veggie Burgers
Samosa Pie
Tacos, Frijoles and Refried Beans, Guacamole, Pico de Gallo
Garlic Swiss Potatoes
Pad Thai Fried Noodles
Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos
Baked Beans
Sweet Potato Casserole
Fried Rice

Combine in bowl: 1-14 oz can black beans rinsed, 1 tomato ch, 1 roasted red pepper ch, 1 jalopeno pepper minced, 2 cloves garlic minced, ½ c cilantro, 2 green onion ch.
Assembly: spread layer on half a 10” wheat tortilla. Sprinkle with grated cheddar cheese (1½ c) and crumbled feta (½ c). Fold over.
Cook medium barbeque directly on grate or fry pan with small amount of olive oil – 2-3 minutes per side.

Slice all vegetables thinly using a mandolin, toss in ¼ c olive oil and 1 tbsp rosemary and roast in 350° oven: 1 eggplant, 2 zucchinis, 2 red peppers, 2 yellow peppers, 2 yams, 2 potatoes, 2 red onions. Use 2 sheets in 2 shifts.
Rest of ingredients: 1 c pesto, 8 oz goat cheese finely crumbled, 3 c mozzarella grated, package 10” flour tortillas (nicest is to alternate red and green).
Assembly: in 10” springform pan, assemble layers of tortilla alternating colors /pesto/one kind of vegetable/goat cheese/mozzarella. Rub top with olive oil, add grated mozzarella. Cover tin foil and bake 350° for 50-60 minutes.
Let rest for 5 minutes. Remove sides of pan. Slice like cheese cake. Serves 12.
Tomato Chipotle Sauce: 10 tomatoes quartered, 1 red onion large dice, 3 cloves garlic. Toss in ¼ c olive oil with 1 tbsp brown sugar. Roast oven 350° for 30 minutes. Add 1 tsp chipotle in adobo paste chopped + ¼ c cilantro ch and puree with hand blender or food processor.
Lemon Basil Aioli: Mix 1 c mayonnaise, juice 1 lemon, ½ c fresh basil chopped.
To Serve: Spoon warm tomato chipotle sauce onto plate. Place a slice of pie on top. Drizzle with basil aioli. Serve with salad.

#1. (makes 12 burgers) In large skillet, saute 1 onion diced, 1 clove garlic minced in 1 tbsp vegetable oil. Place in large bowl, cool and add: 1 tbsp cumin, 1 1/2 tbsp chili powder, 1 – 19 oz can black beans drained rinsed and roughly pureed, 1 tsp oregano, 1/4 c parsley or cilantro chopped, 2 tbsp sesame oil, 1/2 c almonds roasted and chopped, 1 c sunflower seeds roasted and chopped, 3 c fine bread crumbs, 1/2 c soy sauce, 5 eggs, 2 c carrots grated and 2 cups oats. Mix well and shape into patties. Dredge lightly in flour. Heat vegetable oil in large pan to brown the burgers on both sides. Serve with whole wheat burger buns topped with Daikon sprouts and roasted garlic aioli or tzatziki.
#2. Moroccan Yam Burgers. Peel 6 cups (1.5 liters, 2 lbs) yams and grate them, place in large bowl. Use food processor for rest of prep. Finely chop 2tbsp garlic and 2 tbsp ginger peeled. Add half of 1 – 19 oz can chickpeas to garlic and ginger and process till smooth. Add to yams. Mash remaining chickpeas in bowl and add to main bowl. Coarsely chop 1 1/2 cups unsalted mixed nuts in FP and add to bowl. Add 1/2 c cilantro chopped, 2 tsp cumin, 1 tbsp chili powder, 1 tsp coriander, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1 tsp black pepper and mix well. Add 2 beaten eggs and 1/3 c dry breadcrumbs and mix well. Measure 1/2 cup portions and form into patties. Saute on medium low ~5 minutes on each side. Serve on whole wheat bun with lettuce, tomato, sliced red onions and tzatziki.

Crust: In food processor – 2 1/2 c all purpose flour + 1 c unsalted butter cut into small pieces, 1/2 tsp salt. Process until coarse meal. Add ice cold water slowly until dough forms a soft ball. Wrap in Saran and refrigerate for 1-2 hours. The dough is soft and moist.
Filling: In large saute pan, heat 4 tbsp oil. Add 2 c onions ch, 10 c 1/2″ cubed potatoes cooked. Saute few minutes. Add spices: 1 1/2 tbsp gnu cumin, 1 tbsp find coriander, 1 1/2 tbsp madras curry powder, 2 tsp turmeric, salt and pepper to taste, 1 tbsp crushed red chilli pepper flakes. Stir well to blend. Add 1/4 c packed fresh cilantro ch, 1/2 c fresh lemon juice, 1 c blanched or frozen peas.
Assembly: Leave 1/3 of dough for top crust. Roll out remaining dough ~1/8th inch thick. Line 10″ springform pan with the dough letting it hang over top ~1/2″. Brush with egg wash (large egg + 1 tbsp water whisked). Pour in filling and press down well. Roll out remaining crust and place over pan. Trim pastry, crimp the edges sealing well. Brush with remaining egg wash.
Bake preheated oven 375 for 1 hour till golden. Best made a day ahead and reheated @350 for 40-45 min.
Serve with mango chutney and raita.

TACOS – Meat, Vegetarian, Fish
I have visited Mexico on two long trips. The taco stand is ubiquitous. They would serve them on corn tortillas, spicy meat, thin piquante guacamole, salsa fresca and possibly some crema or lettuce.
I make 3 kinds: meat, vegetarian and fish.
Meat: sauté 1 lb hamburger or chicken with refried beans, break up all the chunks, 1 finely chopped onion, 2 cloves garlic minced. Add 1 package Old El Pas Taco Sauce and mix.
Vegetarian: Sauté in olive oil: ½ c onion ch, 2 clove garlic, add 1 can refried beans or 2 cans drained black beans/mashed, 2 tsp cumin, ¼ c diced red pepper, green Tabasco or black pepper. Heat thoroughly.
Fish: Fillet of fish of your choice (rinse, pat dry, salt and pepper), cut in thin strips 3-4” long. Beat 1 egg and mix with ¾ cup buttermilk. Soak fish in buttermilk for 30 minutes. Bread in: ¾ c white cornmeal seasoned with 1tsp salt, 1tsp pepper, 1tsp garlic powder, ¼ tsp cayenne pepper. Saute crispy on all sides.
Assembly: Flour tortilla, refried beans, main ingredient, guacamole, pico de gallo, sour cream or crema, lettuce, thinly sliced cucumber.
2 c dried pinto beans covered water by 2″ and soak overnight. Rinse and drain, return to pot, add 1 onion halved and sliced, 1 clove garlic minced, 8 oz bacon diced, 1 guajillo child toasted, stemmed and seeded + 1 chile de arbol stemmed and seeded. Add water to cover by 1″. Boil then simmer 2-3 hours till beans tender and most liquid evaporated. Salt. Sprinkle grated cheese.
Melt 2 tbsp bacon drippings. Add 4 c frijoles, few at time mashing. Add 2-4 tsp cumin. Cook low until thick ~1 hour, stirring and adding water. Top with grated cheese and 1 tbsp chopped green onion.
Mash 2 medium ripe avocados. Add 1 small tomato finely chopped, 1 jalopeno or serrano pepper minced, ¼ cup finely diced onion, 2 tsp fresh cilantro, ¼ tsp salt, juice of 2 limes. Mix.
They are virtually identical but Pico de Gallo is roughly chopped while Sausa Fresca is finely chopped.
Pico de Gallo is always raw diced white onion, tomatoes, chile —usually jalapenos or serranos, and cilantro. Season with salt and lemon or lime juice to taste. Pico de Gallo translates literally to: rooster beak, but means: to coarse chop like using a beak to do the job (instead of a knife)
Salsa Fresca is always minced raw chile, usually chili guerrito (yellow) or another mild to medium chili, green onion, cilantro and cooled boiled water. Any other raw ingredients are to the cook’s fancy, such as tomato, white onion, multiple chili peppers, avocado, mango, bell pepper, etc. Season with salt to taste. Salsa Fresca translates and means fresh sauce (not cooked).
1 1/2 cups seeded, diced tomatoes
1/2 cup diced white or yellow onion
1-3 minced Serrano or jalapeno peppers
1 tablespoon minced garlic
Juice of 2 limes
2 tablespoons cilantro, plus extra for garnish
Salt and pepper

COUSCOUS (Jeff Krueger recipe)
2 c couscous + 2 1/2 c boiling water, cover and stand for 5 minutes. Stir in 3 tbsp cumin. Cover and cool 25 minutes.
Combine 1/2 c oil, 1/2 c lemon juice, 1 tbsp vinegar, 3 cloves garlic minced. Let stand.
Combine 1 red pepper ch, 1/2 c onion ch, 1 can corn kernels, 1 can black beans rinsed, 1/2-1 cup parsley chopped, 1 tsp salt.
Add oil to vegetables then couscous. Mix well. Refrigerate.

Thinly slice 5-6 large potatoes with skins on (use mandolin @ ⅛”).
Mix 500 ml whipping cream, 3 large cloves minced garlic, 1 ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp pepper.
Layer half of potato slices, pour over half cream mixture, then repeat.
Bake 450° for 45 minutes on upper shelf uncovered. Check at 40 minutes.
When cooked, sprinkle 1 ½ x 227 gm brick Swiss cheese shredded on top. Return to oven until bubbly. Remove. Let sit 5 minutes.

Cook 16 oz rice noodles according to package
Large skillet: ½ c oil, sauté 5 cloves garlic till golden. Add 1 lb cooked shrimp, ¼ c pickled radish ch, 1 package tofu cut ½” cubes, cook 3-5 minutes. Set aside.
Reheat skillet: add ½ c white vinegar, ¼ c fish sauce, 2 tbsp ketchup, ¼ c sugar. Heat well. Add noodles. When completely coated, spread to sides of pan and scramble 2 eggs beaten in middle. Fold noodles over the eggs, add shrimp, tofu, radish, 3 green onions sliced, ¼ c bean sprouts.

Cook 5 cups peeled, cubed sweet potatoes in salted water until tender ~10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Saute 2 tsp olive oil, cook medium low 3 ½ c diced onion, 4 large cloves garlic minced, 1 tbsp minced green chilli tender ~7 minutes. Add 4 tsp cumin, 4 tsp coriander. Cook 3-4 minutes. Stir frequently. Remove from heat and set aside.
In food processor, combine 3 – 15 oz cans drained black beans, ⅔ c lightly packed cilantro, 2 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tsp salt, and cooked sweet potato. Puree till smooth. Mix with onions and spices.
Preheat oven 350°. Oil large baking dish. Spoon ⅔-¾ c filling into 8” tortilla, roll and place seam side down in baking dish. Cover tightly with foil and bake 30 min. Serve with salsa.

The instructions are the same for all three recipes.
Soak navy beans overnight or up to 12 hours for even softer baked beans. Drain beans and rinse. Put beans into Crock Pot or slow cooker. Add all the ingredients from your preferred baked beans recipe. Stir. Cover and cook 6-7 hours on high, or 10-12 hours on low. Add water to the Crock Pot, if needed.
Serve on toast for breakfast, with scrambled eggs for lunch, or as a side dish with dinner. Enjoy!
1. Homemade Baked Beans
1.5 lbs (3 cups) dried small white beans, or navy beans
2.5 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon salt
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup molasses
2 tablespoons dried mustard
Optional: 2 garlic cloves, minced
Optional: sautéed chopped onion
2. Boston Baked Beans
1.5 lbs (3 cups) dried small white beans, or navy beans
1/4 pound bacon
2.5 cups water
1 tablespoon salt
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 cup molasses
2 tablespoons dried mustard
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 sautéed chopped onion
3. Vegetarian Baked Beans
This one is similar to the homemade baked beans recipe, but is less sweet as it contains no honey and the salt has been cut. Feel free to add more molasses.
1.5 lbs (3 cups) dried small white beans, or navy beans
2.5 cups vegetable broth
1/2 tablespoon salt
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1/2 cup molasses
2 tablespoons dried mustard
Optional: 2 garlic cloves, minced
Optional: sautéed chopped onion
4. Great Canadian Beans
In saucepan, medium 1 tbsp oil, sauté 1 small onion chopped fine x 5min. Add 28 oz can plum tomatoes undrained and chopped, pinch hot pepper flakes, 2 tbsp maple syrup, 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, 6 sun dried tomatoes chopped, 2 x 398 cans navy beans drained and rinsed. Salt and pepper. Simmer 15 minutes.

Pierce 5 medium sweet potatoes, place on paper towels and microwave high 15-18 minutes or till tender. Cool. Peel and mash to make 3 cups. Mix potatoes, 1/2 c butter or margarine, 1/4 c brown sugar, 2 large eggs, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 cup milk. Beat till smooth. Place in greased 2 liter casserole. Microwave medium for 3 minutes, then stir. Combine 2 tbsp maple syrup and 1/2 cup toasted chopped hazelnuts and sprinkle over. Microwave medium 5 minutes till heated through.

1 c Uncooked rice
5 T Butter
1 c Chopped onion
1 c Chopped carrots
2/3 c Chopped scallions
3 T Sesame seeds
5 Eggs
5 T Soy sauce
Salt Pepper
Cook rice according to package directions.
In a large skillet melt butter. Add onions, carrots and scallions. Saute until carrots are translucent. Set aside. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Place sesame seeds in a shallow pan. Bake until golden brown (10 to 15 minutes), shaking pan occasionally for even colour.
Lightly grease another skillet. Beat eggs. Pour into hot skillet. Cook as you would scrambled eggs. Combine rice, vegetables,
sesame seeds and eggs. Add soy sauce. Stir. Salt and pepper to taste.

SPANAKOPITA Serves eight – Yields one 9x13x2-inch pie.
For the filling:
2 lb. fresh spinach, washed, dried, trimmed, and coarsely chopped OR 1 lb. frozen chopped spinach. Thaw the spinach overnight or in a colander under warm running water. Squeeze out the liquid and skip the pan-wilting step.
3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch scallions (about 3 oz. or 10 small), white and light-green parts only, trimmed and finely chopped
1 onion chopped
2 cups crumbled feta cheese (10 oz.)
1/2 cup finely grated Greek kefalotyri cheese or Parmigiano-Reggiano
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh dill
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
Kosher or fine sea salt
?2-5 cloves garlic minced

For the assembly:
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil or melted butter or combination of both for brushing; more as needed
Eighteen 9×14-inch sheets frozen phyllo dough (I use Athens brand), thawed and at room temperature
2 tsp. whole milk
Tips for working with phyllo (phyllo dries out very fast and becomes brittle when exposed to air)
• Phyllo sheets thaw more evenly and are less likely to stick together if you let the unopened package thaw in the refrigerator overnight. You can keep unopened, thawed phyllo in the fridge for up to a month.
• Don’t open the phyllo package until you have all the other ingredients prepared and you’re ready to work.
• Unroll the phyllo sheets and lay them flat on a dry surface. Immediately cover with plastic wrap and then a damp towel. (Covering with just a damp towel will moisten the sheets and make them stick together.)
• Keep the phyllo covered when not working with it, and don’t leave it uncovered for more than a minute at a time.
• Work as fast as you can.
• Use a soft-bristle pastry brush to lightly coat the sheets with melted butter or oil. Start at the edges (to keep them from cracking) and work in toward the centre.
• Roll up any unused sheets, wrap well in plastic, and refrigerate for up to two weeks. Or, wrap in plastic and then foil to freeze for up to two months.
Position a rack in the centre of the oven and heat to 375°F.

Make the filling: Heat a 10-inch straight-sided saute pan over medium-high heat. Add a few large handfuls of the spinach and cook, tossing gently with tongs. As the spinach starts to wilt, add the rest a few handfuls at a time. Cook until all the spinach is wilted and bright green, about 4 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the spinach to a colander set in a sink. Let cool slightly and squeeze with your hands to extract as much of the remaining liquid as you can.
Wipe the pan dry with a paper towel. Heat the oil or butter in the pan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and scallions and cook until soft and fragrant, about 4 minutes. Stir in the spinach, turn off the heat, and let cool for 5 minutes. Then stir in the cheeses, eggs, parsley, nutmeg, and 1/2 tsp. salt and mix thoroughly. Add dill at very end as fragile.

Assemble the pie: With a pastry brush, lightly coat the bottom and sides of a 9x13x2-inch baking pan with some of the oil. Working quickly, lightly oil one side of a phyllo sheet and lay it in the pan oiled side up and off centre so that it partially covers the bottom and reaches halfway up one long side of the pan (the edge on the bottom of the pan will be about 1 inch from the side). Lightly oil the top of another phyllo sheet and lay it oiled side up and off centre so it reaches halfway up the other long side of the pan. (If your pan has sloped sides, the sheets may be slightly longer than the bottom of the pan; if so, let the excess go up one short side of the pan and then alternate with subsequent sheets.) Repeat this pattern with 4 more phyllo sheets. Next, lightly oil the tops of 3 phyllo sheets and layer them oiled side up and centreed in the pan.
Spread the filling evenly over the last layer.
Repeat the oiling and layering of the remaining 9 phyllo sheets over the filling in the same way you layered the previous 9. With the oiled bristles of the pastry brush, push the edges of the phyllo down around the sides of the pan to enclose the filling completely.
With a sharp knife, score the top phyllo layer into 24 rectangles, being careful not to cut all the way through to the filling. Using the same pastry brush, brush the milk along all the score marks (this will keep the phyllo from flaking up along the edges of the squares). Bake the spanakopita until the top crust is golden brown, 35 to 45 minutes. When you take it out of the oven cover it with a damp cloth while it cools for a little bit to prevent top dough from drying out and crumbling. Let cool until just warm. Cut out the rectangles carefully along the score marks and serve.
Serve with pita and hummus and Greek salad. Let it cool for 10-15 minutes before eating to get the full flavour out of the dish. Greeks typically serve food at room temperature to enjoy the full taste.

1. Destem the spinach as the stems are bitter.
2. Excess moisture kills this dish: spin spinach dry thoroughly, squeeze the spinach between 2 plates to remove the liquid, use pre-washed baby spinach (simple and no need to wash or dry), squeeze and drain frozen spinach well (put in strainer and press down with a plate), saute the frozen spinach in a bit of olive oil until the moisture evaporates (about 5 minutes).
3. smooth and flatten the phyllo as much as possible, especially the top layer because it won’t puff up when you are baking it.
4. Also put the spanakopita in the fridge before baking so the butter/oil mix solidifies, easier to cut into squares, reduces the amount of moisture and bakes much better on the top
5. Use melted butter to brush the phyllo – better flavour and better browning. Don’t drench in oil or butter and use only enough to add flavour.
6. Extra phyllo? Put some in middle.
7. You can make the pie up to 4 hours ahead. Keep warm, if desired, or serve at room temperature. Can also make up to the baking point, freeze and cook an extra 20-30 minutes.
8. Bake covered with foil for first 30 minutes at 350 then remove foil, turn up heat to 375 for another 10 minutes or so until phyllo lightly browns.
9. Try adding plain cream cheese to the feta cheese for a creamier texture
10. One tip with phyllo. Before putting in the oven, cut the top into squares. Take 1/2 cup olive oil in a saucepan and heat until it is just starting to smoke white (before it burns black), pull off fire. Pour it on top of the layers of [phyllo dough, so it crisps. This will prevent any soggy phyllo dough. Then cook in the oven for the 40 or so minutes. (I am not sure how good an idea this is but give it a try and see if it works).

About admin

I would like to think of myself as a full time traveler. I have been retired since 2006 and in that time have traveled every winter for four to seven months. The months that I am "home", are often also spent on the road, hiking or kayaking. I hope to present a website that describes my travel along with my hiking and sea kayaking experiences.
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