Saturday, September 30, 2006


One of the best things about pierogi is the endless combinations of fillings, both sweet and savoury. My suggestion for this week is the pierogies recipe from It'll be interesting to see what additions and changes people make with the fillings. Happy cooking!

Zucchini Date Muffins!

Here are my pictures from making the zucchini date muffins. I actually made them right away but kept forgetting to post.

I bought dates coated in oat flour at the fancy Food Front coop in NW Portland, after a long and fancy hike! However, I didn't buy enough so I had to sub in some zante currants that I bought on the road (in South Dakota!) AA saw this picture and said DONUT!

zucchini, golden flax, and spelt flour mixture

zucchini and flour mixed (for you, Carla!)

dates and raisins and water



close up! I loved them!

Friday, September 29, 2006

courgette cravings, mini muffins, darling dates

I loved the look of the shredded zucchini covered with the flour! It looked creepy and I'd just been looking at Martha's Halloween cookbook!

I made half the batch, made small muffins. They were okay. They taste like they aren't cooked enough, but the tops are crispy so I can't really bake them longer.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Overdue Injera

Well,i did it. I went to a friend's cottage on the weekend and made injera. I took the necessary ingredients with me, but i had a fun afternoon making it. And was pretty successful, if i say so myself. The only thing was that it didn't taste 'exactly' like the injera i get at the Ethiopian recipes i go to. But, it looked and felt like it, so i'm happy.

I did use a non-stick pan without oil and it really worked. Following Michelle's advice, i looked for those bubbles and pulled it out. I didn't realize until i re-read the directions that we don't have to flip the bread over so i'm glad i saw that in the end. It was fun to swirl it around in the pan to make it evenly distributed.

Thanks for everyone that made or attempted to make this dish. I'm so happy that i made injera! And, i can't believe that fava beans aren't available everywhere! I'm in for the muffins, but i too would love to make a recipe that is gluten-free to make sure we can all try our recipes.

Monday, September 25, 2006

date-zucchini-spelt-flax-sunflower seed muffins

I didn't really take many pictures. I followed the recipe pretty exactly, except that I topped up my second cup of spelt flour with some cake and pastry flour (I ran out of spelt!). I used 1/4 cup flax seeds, 1/4 cup sunflower for my seed portion of the recipe.

I made both a loaf and six "Texas-sized" muffins. They were tasty (and a little blurry, it would seem!).




Sunday, September 24, 2006

A Date with Zucchini Date Muffins

Ok, so it's practically Monday for many of you over there on the east coast and still no recipe. People gotta post recipes to keep this thing afloat, so keeping in line with talk of muffins and such, why don't we make these zucchini date muffins?

Jae's Domestic Affair blog is very awesome as is Jae herself, so I always feel good when I make one of her recipes. Her maple flax cookies are one of my absolute favorites. I'm really looking forward to an exciting use for my big farmer's market zucchini (50 cents!) Next month, as fall starts to really settle in here, I'm really going to crave the apple muffins, too! Yay Jae!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

ain't no ful

I thought I could do it, but I did not succeed in locating any fava beans here in Iowa City. We do actually have an Ethiopian restaurant (sort of) and they serve ful, but they apparently get their fava beans elsewhere because alas, my search didn't turn any up. Surprised the heck outta me.

What's up next?

Friday, September 22, 2006

Ful of Beans

Well here is my wee Ethiopian feast. The fava beans had a funny would you describe it?

When they were boiled a bit and I mashed them, they started to look like baby barf! ha ha

But then when the liquid evaporated they started to look more like refried beans, as the recipe promised. Much better!

Injera...I might not have tried to make this myself had it not been suggested, so I'm glad you suggested it, vania!

Attempt #1:

Attempt #2:

3rd time lucky:

So I had injera and ful, with a sweet potato-kale-sesame seed mash. Yum!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Wat? Waaaaaat?*

On my way home tonight, I forgot to get the favas. Since I still wanted to participate, I made a dish from Vegetarian Main Dishes From Around the World, a book I got a couple of years ago. I had all the ingredients for a Yemesirkik, or Yemesir Wat, as I've only been able to find it online. It's a lentil dish made with red or brown lentils, onions, berbere and garlic.

Pretty simple! Well, I don't have berbere, but I whipped up a version with the spices that I do have, minus paprika. I'll be eating it with some steamed chard and a whole wheat tortilla. Perhaps I'll give the injera a try one day. Maybe when I have my good camera fixed so I can take prettier photos.

*any Pee-wee's Big Adventure fans out there? Remember the big ear in the Magic Shop? "WHAT? WHAT?"

I pity the ful... (part 3)

Ok, I made it. I reached the injera pot-of-gold today!

Or almost. Still no lemony-vinegary taste/smell. But what I made today definitely looked and acted like injera. Hurrah!

So, the directions say to heat this in a nonstick skillet without oil. After trying it twice that way, I learned that wasn't possible. But my problem yesterday could have very well been that I was overcompensating with too much oil.

Today, I put the thinnest layer of oil and spread it around. Think greasing a baking tin thin for each injera. Heat up the pan, then drop in a half a cup of batter.

The directions (as I remember them) say that you should get the batter all around the pan. I'd say, pour it in the same spot, and it will make a nice circle, and then leave it alone. That's the method I had success with (finally).

Now, see this picture.

This looks like it's not done, right? Well just about at that moment, perhaps a bit after (let's say a minute or less), it starts to stick to the pan. So take it off early. It will dry out nicely. Trust me. Oh, and be ready with your spatula.

It didn't stick to the pan at all, but I had trouble getting it to come out without cracking it some in the middle. So I'd slide the spatula on one side and then the plate on the other and slide it on. I finally mastered that on the third try, at which point I ran out of batter.


I also think that setting the batter longer than an hour might be the secret, too. As in, don't make plans to meet up on the other side of town while you're trying to make injera.

Sarah was joining me for knit night, so I invited her over to partake in our ethiopian leftovers.

from top: green lentil and green pea stew, south indian vegetable medley salad, red lentil dal, ful, and spicy vegetable stew. On homemade injera!

Sarah with her plate. Iced tea and soy milk in the foreground. Yes, we're fancy like that.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Not the Ful Meal

I couldn't resist another pun! I made the Ful last night, as well as an accompanying sweet potato recipe. I did not have time time to make the injera from scratch, so like the others i bought a ready-made near substitute - thin chapatis. This weekend i'll be at a cottage for 4 days so i will have a lot of time on my hands to attempt the injera. And i'm excited about the trial and error process like Michelle had!

The ful was good for us. As in, we liked it! Simple recipe and a nice flavour for our fall weather. Having read the others comments about using dry beans, i bought canned fava (faba?) beans. It did the trick, if not a bit salty. I too am not sure i would want it for breakfast!

I also made a sweet potato dish - mashed with cardamon. This recipe was from the East African cookbook i mentioned previously, and i had some sweet potatoes around. A bit too orange/beige all around, so i added some parley here and there to add colour.

All in all a good meal. I will post my success/failure with injera next week!

I pity the ful... (part 2)

So for lunch, I served the ful with two dishes from a vegetarian South Indian cookbook called Dakshin. Though Ethiopia and South India are quite different places, their reliance on flavorful and spicy curries makes the two cuisines work together, I think.

If you happen to have that book, on the left is the Vegetable Medley Salad and on the right is the Okra Salad (minus the yogurt). I thinned out the ful to cook it, but I added too much liquid, as you can see.

Then Sare gives me a call later today to say that she'd like to make the injera with me that I talked to her about on Saturday. I discover on Saturday at the street fair that neighbor and fellow vegan Sare likes to bake. She was selling cookies under the name, Tasty Revolution, and they were rad. So we made a deal that she'd come help with the injera.

Before she came over, I went to the coop to pick up the self-rising flour, but they didn't have it. I didn't know what that was, so I ended up (after a bit of conversation with the guys who worked there) buying Barley flour (which we figured might be kinda akin to teff flour (which they also didn't have). Turns out Sare finds out a formula for self-rising flour that involves just regular white flour (which she brings over) plus baking soda, etc. Here we are with the mixture after it has set for an hour.

We look ambivalent in this picture, though I'm not sure if we were yet at this point.

She puts it into the blender (2 cups at a time)

and adds water

and I pulse it until fully blended. Then I went to heat it up. It involved quick movements of the wrist, which Aaron tried to capture.

We were excited that it looked very like injera. But it didn't cook enough on the sides. So we moved to a larger burner and a bigger, nonstick pan (we were using the cast iron and it stuck to the bottom).

started in a new pan

again, looking like injera, but this one came out even worse

we had to roll it off and it looked like this!

So we decided to use oil to fry the bottom and prevent sticking. That worked, but they were very heavy and a little greasy. We didn't take pictures of this process cause by then we were just ready to eat.

Here's a picture of the finished deal (rolled up and underneath) with 3 different dishes from Kitee's website (though I really only followed the recipe to the letter for this one, still my favorite of Ethiopian recipes. I don't know if it's the combination of vegetables, that magical berbere spice or what). The other two are lentil stew (on the bottom left) and red lentils (on the right). But I forgot to reheat the ful! Which is fine, cause there was plenty to eat!

While I wouldn't consider this injera recipe (or my experience with it) a success, it has made me think more about learning to make my own. Rather than buying it like I have often done, making my own at least seems more possible than it did before.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

September Ful's

My internet connection wouldn't let me post this last night. Now I'm up super early and it's working again.

The fava beans mashed up by themselves.

Beans and oil.

I only used tomatoes as garnish.

I used this "naan" bread, which seemed maybe more like pita than naan. But that's okay, I'm pretty sure I've had this dish once before, and it was served with pita.

The ful was good, if a bit salty. I'm still unsure if I would eat it for breakfast, but I would have it again for lunch or dinner.