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Hypermarché chili

30 Nov

Chili is one of those things that I’ve never really mastered without a seasoning packet. But tonight’s version with ingredients from Hypermarché Exclusif on the VDN in Dakar may have broken that streak!

250g ground beef
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup TVP*
1/8 cup cornmeal
2 lg cans whole tomatoes, crushed or blended
1/2 teaspoon salt or one beef bouillon cube
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon oregano
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1-2 tablespoons chili powder (or more to taste!)
1 lg can kidney beans, drained
Mimolette cheese
Drained lait caillé nature (Ardo brand is best!)

* Textured Vegetable Protein. Or you can use 500g ground beef. But we like the mixture for health reasons and also because it makes a nice, thick chili.

Brown ground beef with garlic and onions in a pot over medium-high heat. Add tomatoes, salt/bouillon, oregano, cumin, cayenne and chili powder. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 30 minutes.

Add drained and rinsed beans. Stir to combine, then cover and simmer for another 20 minutes.

Mix cornmeal with some of the tomato liquid, then add to the chili. Stir to combine and simmer for a final 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve with grated mimolette cheese and lait caillé sour cream‘. Jalapeños from America are optional. 😉


Morning Glory Muffins

25 Nov

Perfect Sunday afternoon treat, despite the name.

1 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
pinch nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup oil
1/3 unsweetened lait caillé
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 apple, cored, peeled and diced
1/4 cup seedless raisins
1/2 cup grated carrots
1/2 cup grated zucchini
1/4 cup dried flaked unsweetened coconut

In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt; break up any lumps with your fingers or a wooden spoon.

In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, oil and vanilla, then add to flour mixture and stir just until combined. Add apples, raisins, carrots, zucchini and coconut and stir gently until well combined.

Spoon batter into paper-lined muffin tins, filling each about 2/3 full. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until cooked through.

I have conquered Senegalese beef.

20 May

4 kilos ‘boeuf tranche arrière’ (purchased at CDA for 2800cfa/kilo)
1 lg Flag beer (could also use 2 cups red wine, beef broth or brewed coffee)
2 tsp beef bouillon
2 onions, cut into thick wedges

Heat a splash of olive oil over high heat in a heavy frying pan. Brown the pieces of meat on both sides. Set the meat in a large roasting pan along with the onions.

Pour the liquid over the meat. It should come up about 1/3 to 1/2 way up the meat. Add the bouillon.

Cover with a lid (or tightly with foil) and bake at 300° for a looong time. I mean like up to seven hours. Once an hour, turn the meat so that it stays wet with the liquid. You’ll know it’s done with the meat can be broken apart with a fork!

(You can make this up in large batches and then freeze it in ziploc bags with some of the broth for later use.)

Chocolate banana muffins (all whole wheat!)

13 May

Perfect healthy snack for chocolate-lovers!

2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
1/4 cup strong brewed coffee, cooled
1 1/2 cups mashed very ripe bananas (3 to 4 medium)
1/2 cup plain yogurt or lait caillé
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Mix sugar and oil in large bowl. Stir in eggs and coffee until well blended. Add bananas and yogurt. Beat until smooth. Stir in flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt just until moistened.

Fill lined muffins cups about 3/4 full. Bake in preheated oven 350° for about 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pans and place top side up on wire rack. Cool completely, about two hours.

Wrap tightly and store at room temperature up to 4 days, or refrigerate up to 10 days.

Similar recipes on this site:
Coffee banana bread
Citrus spice banana bread
Applesauce breakfast bread
Spiced carrot zucchini bread
Britt’s zucchini bread
Hungarian apricot bread

Esther’s spicy chickpeas and rice

8 Apr

After my son was born, my friend brought over this delicious meal. It was a spicy sauce with chickpeas and great, bright flavors which was served over rice. I asked for the recipe and was amazed.

1 sm can chickpeas, drained
1 1/2 cups salsa
1 tsp cumin
lime juice (optional)
fresh cilantro (optional)
hot rice

Great, isn’t it? Just combine the salsa, chickpeas and cumin. You can either simmer on the stove or refrigerate overnight to let the chickpeas pick up the flavors. Serve hot over rice, with lime and cilantro if you want. (I do!)

My go-to Pinterest chicken recipe

21 Mar

Not all delicious food food photographs well. Case in point. So just trust me. We eat this about once a week!

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
1/2 cup zesty Italian dressing
juice from one lime
3 Tbsp honey

Place chicken in gallon ziplock bag. Combine all other ingredients and pour over. Seal and marinate for at least an hour. (Or if you’re in a rush – don’t.)

Pour all ingredients into a large skillet and cook over medium heat sloooowly (like 20-30 minutes) until liquid evaporates and remaining marinade becomes thick and caramelized.

Red pepper sloppy joes

11 Oct

1/2 pound ground beef
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/4 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 tsp vinegar
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3/4 to one cup tomato purée
salt and pepper to taste
2 toasted buns

Brown ground beef in a skillet over medium high heat. Drain off fat. Reduce heat to medium and cook onions, peppers, sugar, vinegar and Worcestershire sauce with meat for five minutes. Add tomato purée and stir. Reduce heat to simmer and cook five minutes longer. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve over toasted buns.

Chickpea falafel with cucumber yogurt sauce

27 Aug

I need to come clean up front and say that I’d never had falafel before making these, so had no idea what I was aiming to copy. I’ve since had falafel at an amazing Lebanese restaurant and would say that mine were close, but the shape was flatter, the consistency was smoother and more moist (less hush-puppy-ish), and the taste was more flavorful than those at the restaurant. Both were very good, but I think I’ll stick with this version!

1 large can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained
2-4 cloves garlic, crushed (or 1/2 tsp dried garlic)
2-4 Tbsp tahini (opt)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1-2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 cup flour

Purée all ingredients with stick blender/blender/food processor. Shape into balls and flatten slightly with palms.

Pour just enough oil to cover the bottom of a frying pan. Heat to med-high and cook falafel ‘patties’, flipping once browned. This method is much healthier than the traditional deep fried version, but the taste is still wonderful because of the garlic, lemon juice and tahini.

Serve falafel hot with:
bunch of parsley, rinsed and chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
lemon slices
bunch of mint leaves
lettuce leaves
pita bread or Turkish bread

Taziki sauce
1/2 cucumber, peeled and chopped finely
1 cup plain Greek yogurt

Whole wheat rolls

20 Jul

I eat one of these every morning with peanut butter and honey. Also good with jam and butter. Oh, and they make good whole wheat hamburger buns too!

Part of the beauty of this recipe is that the timing on it is very flexible. You can work on it a little, go do something else, come back to it, leave again, etc…

1 tsp yeast
1 Tbsp sugar
3 cups hot water
about 4 cups whole wheat flour
about 2 cups white flour
3 tsp salt
1/4 cup potato flakes (optional)
1/4 cup sesame seeds (optional)
1/4 cup wheat bran (optional)
1-2 tsp oil for bowl and baking dish
1/4 cup milk

Pour water into a large bowl and heat to 120° (test it with your pinkie – it should be hot, but not so hot that you can’t keep your finger in it). Stir in the sugar, then add yeast. Let sit a few minutes until foamy.

Add 1 cup each white flour and wheat, salt and any of the optional add-ins you want to use. Mix well with a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon. Add another 1 cup each flour and mix well. Let sit for about 10 minutes, but you can leave it for up to half an hour.

Add in a half cup flour at a time, mixing after each one until flour ‘disappears’ into the dough. When it gets hard to mix, let it sit another 10-30 minutes.

Turn the dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead for five minutes. If it’s too sticky, add a very small handful of whole wheat flour and then keep kneading. Try to use as little flour as possible though!

Eventually the dough will be smooth and elastic, not sticking to your hands, but maybe to the counter still a bit.

Oil a large bowl and place the dough in it, rolling it in the oil to coat it. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let rise until doubles in size, about an hour. To test readiness, poke with your finger. If the indention stays, you’re good to go.

Cut the dough into 16 pieces. Roll each one into a ball, pinching the ends to form a little belly button. Dip the dough balls in milk, then place them in a large glass baking dish (oiled), sides touching. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise again until doubled.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. They are done when internal temperature reaches 180 degrees.

Tip: If using a glass pan, let them cool in the pan. They’ll be a lot easier to get out once cooled!

Once cooled, store in a sealed container or freeze.

Whole wheat bagels

25 Apr

In a large bowl, whisk together:

1 1/2 cups warm water (as hot as you can stand it and still keep your finger in it)
2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt

Using a wooden spoon, stir in:

1 cup flour
2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour

Optional: When adding flours you can also add cinnamon and raisins, garlic, minced onion, blueberries, etc…

Turn dough onto floured surface and knead for 10-15 minutes, adding up to 1/4 cup whole wheat flour if you need to keep it from sticking. Don’t cheat on the kneading time – it needs to be very well kneaded.

Put the dough back in the bowl and cover with a wet towel. Let rest in a warm place one hour or until doubled in size.

Punch down, then let rest 10 minutes.

Pull the dough out and cut it into eight pieces. Shape each piece into a tight ball. I usually pinch the ends together repeatedly to form a tight ball with a “belly button”, but whatever works.

Gently poke a hole through each ball using your pinkie finger. Gently stretch it until the whole is one inch wide. Place the bagels on a greased cookie sheet. Leave plenty of space for them to rise. Let rise in a warm place 20 minutes.

Fill a saucepan 2/3 full of water and bring to a boil. Boil the bagels for 2 minutes on each side.

Pull out the bagels using a slotted spoon and place them on a baking sheet.

(If you want to add sesame seeds or poppy seeds to the bagels, brush tops with beaten egg whites then sprinkle toppings on now.)

Bake in pre-heated oven at 425° for 20-25 minutes or until brown.