Well, by the end of this past weekend I finally had unpacked and organized all of my remaining kitchen items. (A few things had to be returned to their owners or donated.) I made out a meal plan for the week, for what seemed like the first time in ages, and headed to the store. I’ve been favoring AFR lately in an attempt to make my cooking life a little simpler and leaner. And I even managed to make a couple of dishes from it in the midst of being half unpacked the last few weeks.
This ended up being 3 courses of mixed latin fusion inspired goodness.
The Kale salad was of my own invention to use up some ripe mango and avocado I got from my mother. I used kale because I’m addicted to it and crave it all the time, but I snuck in a little chiffonade of basil since I had just bought it and it smelled so good. It made for a very nice, fresh contrast. I added black beans and some super fresh corn to give it a sort of mexi vibe, and dressed it very lightly with lime juice, a tiny mist of olive oil, a pinch of salt, and some fresh ground smoked black pepper.
Mango, Avocado, Kale salad
1 bunch of kale, stems removed, ripped or chopped into tiny pieces
10 basil leaves, cut into chiffonade or chopped finely, optional
1 mango, small dice
1 avocado, small dice
1 can of black beans, well rinsed
1 tbsp. of red onion, chopped finely
fresh corn cut from one ear
lime juice, to taste
olive oil, optional
salt & pepper
I was going to try Isa’s suggested Mashed Yuca with Cilantro & Lime, but both stores I went to were curiously out of cilantro. I was already planning on buying the Goya frozen yuca instead of buying fresh, since that’s all I’ve ever seen my family use, and it was easier. That’s what’s in that pot there below on the right, 2 small bags worth. I had a little red onion left from the salad, so that’s the pink you’ll surely notice in my final result. I used this and 2 big cloves of garlic to make a quickie mojo, because I just can’t imagine eating yuca without it. So I’ll put my little version here as well. It sure tasted good. But honestly, just the yuca straight out of the salted water tasted amazing. I love yuca. I had never made it before. I did use Isa’s suggestion for reserving a cup of the cooking water to mash with.
So I made a double batch of the tofu, because Thomas is a tofu eating machine, and I wanted some leftovers to eat with the leftover salad for lunch the next day. (PS- I did, and they were extremely delicious together!) So that’s me putting fork holes in two bricks of sprouted, prepressed tofu. The only thing I didn’t double in the marinade was the oil. I stuck with just the 1 tsp. and I used less salt in the rub, and not quite double the chili powder.
In the marinade…
With their rub on…
Baked, flipped, baked some more & outta the oven…
Ty’s Mojo Infused Mashed Yuca
2 lbs of frozen yuca chunks (I used the Goya Brand), cooked according to package directions/taste. I like mine a bit “al dente” for lack of a better term. Yuca will get mushy, but for me the perfect texture is still firm on the inside.
1 c. of reserved cooking water
1 tbsp. finely chopped onion
2 large cloves of garlic, very thinly sliced
mist of olive oil
2 tbsp. lime juice, split
1. In the last 5-10 minutes of yuca cooking, spray a small skillet with a little olive oil and lightly fry up onion and garlic. As it gets dryer, splash in 1 tbsp. of lime juice, and cook down.
2. Drain yuca and return to pot or to a large bowl you can mash it in. Remove the fibrous little strings in the centers of the chunks, preferably with a fork so you don’t burn your fingers. Add “mojo” mixture, additional lime juice and enough cooking water to get to your desired consistency. Mmm! This made a wonderful bed for the tofu.
So if you’re really cool, you could knock this out in 30 minutes flat. If you make the salad while the other 2 cook. I’m not that cool, so it took me somewhere between 45-60 minutes so that I could include dancing and beer drinking too. If you haven’t checked out Appetite for Reduction, it’s worth checking out. The recipes are a lot simpler than let’s say the Veganomicon, but still packed with plenty of flavor and guiltier items too like corn bread and onion rings, etc. I like it so much I even bought the kindle edition with the intent of selling back or giving away my hard copy, but don’t think I will after all.