WBEZ | Downturn Dish http://www.wbez.org/tags/downturn-dish Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Downturn Dish: Easy (Red) Beans and Rice http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/08/downturn-dish-easy-red-beans-and-rice/7392 <p>I'm subletting this summer and the girls who live with me love rice -- a lot. When I moved in they showed me the rice cooker (a contraption I never thought useful) and said I could help myself to their rice -- bags and bags of rice. Now, as time passed, I've learned to love the rice cooker even though I still think my 10-minute brown rice works just fine. Although I'd like to think of myself as a cook, I generally end up making the same meals over and over again. (But hey, they're my staples and they're easy).‚  So I bring to you my own take on red (or black, or pinto) beans and rice. I generally cook for myself with enough leftover for my roommate and the next day's lunch, but I'm adjusting this for four people. My method is pretty free-form so give and take as you'd like. 2 cups rice (white rice, brown rice, basmati rice, long-grain wild rice? Whatever you have) 1 can beans (any kind will do) 1 onion 2 peppers (I use whatever I happened to buy this week: green, red, yellow or orange) A few shakes of dried red pepper flakes A few pinches of chili powder (more if you like it spicy) Fresh cilantro (If I'm lucky, I add this) 1 tablespoon of oil (I only have olive oil, but canola or vegetable oils work too) Start cooking the rice (it's OK if it's done before the rest). Chop onions and sautƒ© in oil in a frying pan. Chop peppers and add to onions. Cook vegetables until slightly tender -- about seven minutes, stirring occasionally. Add red pepper flakes and chili powder. Stir in beans and let simmer for five minutes. Add cooked rice to pan and stir until evenly distributed. Frying pan not big enough? No problem, spoon serving sizes onto plates and top with rice with vegetable mixture. Makes About 4 Servings</p> Fri, 14 Aug 2009 11:30:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/08/downturn-dish-easy-red-beans-and-rice/7392 Downturn Dish - Cilantro adds zing to summertime favorite http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/07/downturn-dish-cilantro-adds-zing-summertime-favorite/7378 <p>TGIF! Tonight I'm using up the produce in my fridge before I hit up the farmers markets this weekend. I went Saturday to the <a href="http://www.explorechicago.org/city/en/things_see_do/event_landing/events/mose/lincoln_park_farmers.html" target="_blank">Lincoln Park Farmers Market</a> and picked out some red potatoes with intentions of using them last weekend -- they're still sitting in the crisper. Then when the farmer said I had to try his cilantro -- "It's only $1.50!" -- I said no because I'm always hesitant with fresh herbs. I'm never sure I'll use them before they go bad and I didn't have any cilantro recipes I was dying to make. So when he threw in a bunch for free, I thanked him and told myself I'd use it in time. <a href="http://wbezhardworking.wordpress.com/2009/06/15/farmers-markets-local-produce-stations-offer-cheap-fresh-ways-to-save-cash/" target="_blank">Like I mentioned before</a>, chatting with the farmer really can help you save at the farmers market! I did pretty well this week with the cilantro, but I still have some leftover. To make sure my produce doesn't go to waste, I found a simple cilantro potato salad recipe from <a href="http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/cilantro-potato-salad-recipe/index.html" target="_blank">Emeril Lagasse</a>. Ingredients: 1 cup mayonnaise 3/4 cup cilantro leaves 1 tablespoon minced garlic 1 teaspoon salt Black pepper 2 pounds small new potatoes, cooked and halved (unpeeled) 1/3 cup finely minced onions Directions: In a bowl, stir together mayonnaise with cilantro, garlic, salt and 7 turns (in my case, dashes because I don't have a pepper grinder) black pepper. Add potatoes and onions and toss to combine thoroughly; cover and refrigerate up to 24 hours before serving. This makes 5-6 servings. Definitely tweak this to please your taste buds. I probably won't use as much mayonnaise and I think it's easier to add your desired amount of salt and pepper.</p> Fri, 17 Jul 2009 15:30:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/07/downturn-dish-cilantro-adds-zing-summertime-favorite/7378 Downturn Dish: Ways to save with summertime picnics http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/07/downturn-dish-ways-to-save-with-summertime-picnics/7372 <p>Here's a list by Jennifer Horn, co-host on the <a href="http://www.dougstephan.com/main.php" target="_blank">Good Day</a><strong></strong> radio program, from<em> </em><a href="http://www.walletpop.com/" target="_blank">Walletpop.com</a> about hosting backyard BBQs without breaking the bank: <ul> <li>Don't buy pre-made burgers. Buy ground beef in bulk and form your own patties. They taste much better and will save you money. If you have kids around, have them help make the patties -- they love it!</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Plan your menu around what's on sale. This time of year, you can get great deals on hot dogs, chicken, ground beef and steaks. When you see a great deal, buy a lot and freeze the meat until you are ready to use it.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Every party needs drinks. Serve up big pitchers of lemonade or iced tea, both of which are great summer thirst-quenchers and can be cheaper than sodas or beer. If you want the best deals on the carbonated stuff, shop supermarket sales and warehouse stores.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Serving alcohol at parties can be expensive. To save money, offer beer, wine and one signature cocktail. Find great discounts on cool whites on sale at your grocery store. Pick a signature cocktail that looks festive while using few ingredients. You can never go wrong with the good ol' fruit juice+vodka combo.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Don't buy prepared salads. They can cost $5 and $6 per pound. Make your own using fresh summer produce, which will be much cheaper and easier to find this time of year. You can usually find some good deals at your <a href="http://wbezhardworking.wordpress.com/2009/06/15/farmers-markets-local-produce-stations-offer-cheap-fresh-ways-to-save-cash/" target="_blank">local farmers market</a>.<strong> </strong></li> </ul> <ul> <li>Keep dessert simple. Watch the sales for deals on ice cream and top each scoop with crumbled cookies and a drizzle of chocolate sauce. If you're feeling nostalgic for those childhood summers, make old fashioned s'mores. The ingredients are cheap and you can make a lot of s'mores from a box of graham crackers and a bag of marshmallows.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>For entertainment, choose great music (your local cable or satellite provider may even have a full channel of summer tunes in their audio lineup), swim if you have a pool, buy cheap water toys at the dollar store for the kids, or play a classic board game under the stars.</li> </ul></p> Wed, 08 Jul 2009 10:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/07/downturn-dish-ways-to-save-with-summertime-picnics/7372 Foodies Beware: Ridiculously cheap eats ahead http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/07/foodies-beware-ridiculously-cheap-eats-ahead/7370 <p><a href="http://chicago.citysearch.com/guide/chicago-il" target="_blank">Citysearch.com</a> already offers reviews and recommendations to the best hotels and restaurants, but now the online guide created a Web site promising inexpensive eats that still satisfy. The foodies over at <a href="http://3buckbites.com/" target="_blank">3buckbites.com</a> know people like to eat good food and they also understand people don't want to spend a lot of money. That's why the Web site's mission is to find tasty treats that won't bust your wallet. The main page features dirt cheap dishes from all over the country, but bring it back to Chicago by using the <a href="http://3buckbites.com/search/" target="_blank">search engine</a>. There, you can select location, food type and price range (from ridiculously cheap -- $.01-$.99 to cheap -- $3-3.99). So it's Wednesday night and you're in the mood for Latin American. Hop on over to 3buckbites, select Chicago, Latin American and your price range and you could be tasting tamales at Coobah for just $3. But that's not all! <a href="http://3buckbites.com/" target="_blank">3buckbites.com</a> depends on you -- the eater -- to submit your own inexpensive discoveries. See something super cheap and delicious the next time you're out on the town? Send a photo of your frugal food find and it could be posted on the Web site for others to try.</p> Wed, 01 Jul 2009 16:54:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/ltalleyatcpr/2009/07/foodies-beware-ridiculously-cheap-eats-ahead/7370 Downturn Dish: Price-conscious parm http://www.wbez.org/ssargent/2009/03/downturn-dish-price-conscious-parm/7285 <p>With summer on our collective doorstep, it's almost time to change your seasonal produce purchases. And this recipe, which can be made with eggplant or zucchini, will be fantastic in the warmer months. The recipe's contributor, Cara Tigue, currently works at Northwestern University but will start graduate school in the fall--which means she's already begun a quest for inexpensive, student-friendly dishes. She likes this meal because it's fast and uses some of her favorite veggies. Plus, as a die-hard Top Chef fan, she aims to maintain a high culinary standard in her own Lakeview kitchen; apparently this recipe is up to par. <strong>Eggplant and/or Zucchini Parmesan (about $10) </strong> <em>Ingredients: 1 small eggplant and/or 2 medium zucchini squashes 2 eggs 1 cup bread crumbs (Italian flavor) 2 tbs grated Parmesan and/or Romano cheese 1 jar tomato sauce 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese Salt, pepper, garlic powder, and dried parsley to taste</em> Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice eggplant and/or zucchini into 1/4 in. slices. In a small bowl, beat together eggs with a whisk. Mix bread crumbs, grated cheese, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and parsley on a plate. Dip slices of eggplant/zucchini in egg wash and then into bread crumb mixture until completely coated. Place breaded slices on a cookie sheet greased with cooking spray. Back 10-15 minutes, turning once. Spread a layer of tomato sauce in the bottom of a 2-quart baking dish. Layer eggplant/zucchini on top of sauce, then a layer of mozzarella. Continue to layer sauce, vegetables, cheese. Bake approx. 25 minutes or until sauce is bubbling, cheese is lightly browned on top, and veggies are soft (but not soggy).</p> Wed, 18 Mar 2009 08:50:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/ssargent/2009/03/downturn-dish-price-conscious-parm/7285 Downturn Dish: Fake it &#039;til you bake it: Ditch expensive meat, keep taste http://www.wbez.org/ssargent/2009/03/downturn-dish-fake-it-til-you-bake-it-ditch-expensive-meat-keep-taste/7282 <p><p class="MsoNormal">"When on a budget, you need to remember that the fastest way to reduce cost is to eliminate meat," writes chef Joe A. Lieberman. "If you are anything like me, it will pain you to read that." But Lieberman believes you can still have a flavorful and filling meal without angering your inner carnivore. This week, he shares two veg-friendly recipes with Hard Working, both of which serve two people for under $10. <span dir="ltr">Joe--not to be confused with the senator or celebrity chef--graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Minneapolis/St. Paul in 2004. He cooks at <a href="http://www.cueatguthrie.com/" target="_blank">Cue at the Guthrie Theater</a>, a new favorite in the Twin Cities. His new <a href="http://theotherjoelieberman.wordpress.com/" target="_blank">blog</a>, debuting this week,‚  will offer recipes and stories, like how he almost named his cat Bacon.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><strong>Vegetarian Risotto (about $9)</strong></p> <p class="MsoNormal">Risotto is a wonderful dish made from Arborio rice, a short-grain rice used mostly in Italian cooking. This dish takes patience and vigilance but is worth the time spent in front of the stove.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Prep time: 30 min</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Cook time: 30-40 min</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Serves: 2</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>Ingredients:</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>1 tbsp vegetable oil</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>1 tbsp butter</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>1 small onion, chopped fine</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>2 cloves minced garlic</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>8 oz. Arborio rice</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>3 cups water</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>1 bullion cube </em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>1 small zucchini chopped in 1/2-inch cubes</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>1 red bell pepper chopped in 1/20-pieces </em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>Salt and pepper to taste</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>2 tbsp Parmesan cheese</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>Balsamic vinegar for drizzling (optional)</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em></em>Bring water to boil and add bullion cube. Stir until cube is dissolved. Set aside but keep warm.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Add oil to a sauce pot on high heat.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">When hot, add the onions and garlic and sweat onions (onions will be translucent in about 3 min).</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Add zucchini, bell pepper and rice. Stir in ingredients and cook until the rice is coated with the oil from the pan.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Take the water/bullion mixture and add 1/2 cup of liquid to your rice. Lower heat to medium-high and stir your rice. You need to let the liquid boil with rice and reduce until there is almost no liquid left. Make sure that you are constantly stirring rice to prevent forming a crust on the bottom of your pan.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Repeat previous step until you have 1/2 cup of liquid left. This is when you want to taste your rice. If the kernels of rice are to hard or gritty add more liquid until you've reached your desired consistency.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">When the risotto is at desired texture add the butter, Parmesan, salt and pepper to the risotto. Mix and remove from heat.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Plate the fruits of your labor, drizzle with balsamic and enjoy!</p> <p class="MsoNormal">*The veggies can be substituted for whatever you like. Just remember that you will be cooking for a while, so choose veggies that will hold up</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><strong>Cold Asian Noodles with Tofu ($7)</strong></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom:12pt;">Can't afford meat? Then fake it!</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Tofu is the blank canvas of a vegetarian's world and it costs about one-third the price of meat, chicken or fish. Just marinate overnight with your favorite vinaigrette, crushed red pepper and soy, or chili powder and oregano and you have the base to almost any dish. Great for lunches or a satisfying late-night snack!</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Prep time: 40 min</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Cook time: 20 min</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Serves: 2-3</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>Ingredients: </em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>1/2 lb. tofu cut into 1-inch cubes</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em>2 tbsp soy sauce </em> <p class="MsoNormal"><em> 3 tbsp sesame oil </em> <p class="MsoNormal"><em> 1 tsp crushed red pepper </em> <p class="MsoNormal"><em> Salt and pepper to taste </em> <p class="MsoNormal"><em> 8 oz. cooked vermicelli noodles chilled </em> <p class="MsoNormal"><em> 1/2 cup chopped green onion </em> <p class="MsoNormal"><em> 1/2 cup shredded red cabbage</em></p> <p class="MsoNormal">Place tofu in a food safe container. Cover with water. Add soy sauce and crushed red pepper. Let sit overnight in fridge. <p class="MsoNormal">The next day, cook noodles according to directions, coat with the 2 tbsp. sesame oil and set aside to chill.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Add remaining sesame oil to hot skillet. Cook until light brown on all sides (approximately 10 min).</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Add green onion and cabbage to skillet with tofu. Toss and remove from heat.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Add tofu and veggies to chilled pasta and toss.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Add salt and pepper to taste. For an extra kick add more crushed red pepper.</p></p> Mon, 16 Mar 2009 09:30:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/ssargent/2009/03/downturn-dish-fake-it-til-you-bake-it-ditch-expensive-meat-keep-taste/7282