goulash

goulash1

Hi friends! I’d like you to meet my favorite sweater-weather dish. It’s warm, hearty, spicy, and excited to see you. It pairs well with crusty bread, some eggy noodles, or a couple glasses of cheap red. It’s also a kick-ass color and makes your house smell uhhhmazing.

As with many beef stew-y things, this recipe makes for plenty of leftovers and tastes even better after a day or two in the fridge. Just in case you hate sharing.

– L

goulash2

recipe: goulash

adapted from Saveur Magazine

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 medium yellow onions
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 2 medium parsnips
  • 1.5 lbs beef chuck
  • 1/4 cup sweet paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried marjoram
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups water (optional: 1 beef bouillon cube)
  • 2 new potatoes
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 cubanelle pepper
  • salt & pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Dice onions, and chop carrots, parsnips, and beef chuck into 1/2″ pieces. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat, then add onions, cover pot, and cook until soft and translucent, around 10 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  2. Increase heat to high; add beef and season with salt and pepper. Cook beef, stirring only once or twice, until lightly browned, about 6 minutes.
  3. Add paprika, marjoram, cayenne, mustard, and garlic; stir to combine. Cook until fragrant, around 2 minutes. Add water (and bouillon if you want), carrots, and parsnips. Bring to boil, then cover and let simmer at medium-low heat for 40 minutes.
  4. While simmering, peel and chop potatoes into 1/2″ pieces. Also core and chop tomato and cubanelle. Add potatoes to the pot and cook, uncovered, for roughly 20 minutes, until everything is tender. Add tomato and cubanelle and cook for another couple minutes.
  5. Salt to taste before serving. This is going to taste super boring unless it’s salted properly; the right amount of sodium is crucial to bringing the flavor out! Go slowly, but be persistent; salt, stir, taste, repeat. You’ll know when you’ve gotten it right.

pumpkin spice latte ice cream

psl ice cream

Life is wackypants right now. I just applied to residency programs, I’m trying to scramble-write my research manuscript, my sub-internship (in which I wear a long white coat and try not to kill people) is about to start, and HOLY CRAP GUYS IT’S PUMPKIN SEASON.

Look at me. Look at this blog. This is a big deal.

I think it’s necessary to explain that I take pumpkin season very seriously. Like, try-to-transform-myself-into-a-winter-squash kind of serious. Last year, I cooked a brand-new pumpkin dish every single week for the entirety of pumpkin season, which, for all intents and purposes, extends from the beginning of September to the end of the year. This year, I’m continuing the tradition, with the added bonus of discovering a beer store down the road that has about 25 different (and changing) pumpkin beers in stock. I also recently figured out that home-roasted pumpkin is both cheaper and more delicious than canned pumpkin and having a couple of the little darlings around all the time doubles as home decor!

My point is this: posers spending $25 a week on Starbucks’ PSL ain’t got nothin’ on my pumpkin addiction. Which, at this moment, is manifesting itself in the form of PSL ice cream.

psl ice cream 2

Leave me a comment with suggestions for future pumpkin adventures! Fuel my crazyfire.

– L

Recipe: pumpkin spice latte ice cream

adapted from the NYTimes’ master ice cream recipe

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 vanilla beans, halved lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup coffee, coarsely ground*
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • pinch of nutmeg and cloves
  • 6 egg yolks*
  • 1 cup roasted pumpkin puree*

Directions

  1. In a medium-sized pot, combine everything except egg yolks and pumpkin. Simmer over medium-low heat until the mixture is warm/hot (think nice relaxing bath temperature. if you were to bathe in spiced coffee cream. I won’t judge.).
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk egg yolks together, then carefully whisk in about a cup of the hot cream. Do this in a slow, steady stream, whisking all the while, because no one likes scrambled eggs in their ice cream.
  3. Add the egg mixture back into the pot and cook, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes. The mixture should thicken to be able to coat the back of a spoon.
  4. Remove from heat and let the custard steep for 30 minutes at room temperature.
  5. Strain the custard through a fine mesh sieve, then mix in the pumpkin. Cover and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours.
  6. Churn it in your ice cream maker! I kept mine going for about 30 minutes, but I think my KitchenAid attachment is defective so just follow the directions for yours. Transfer the ice cream to a container and store in the freezer for a couple hours before serving.

Notes:

  1. Try to grind your coffee as coarsely as you can stand. I didn’t do a very good job of it and there were fine grounds in my ice cream. I didn’t care, but you might.
  2. My egg yolks were tiny, for whatever reason. If you’re using big eggs, maybe stick to 5.
  3. ROAST YOUR PUMPKIN. Oh man. It is so much better. Take a 2-3 lb sugar pumpkin, pop the stem off, slice it down the middle and scoop the guts out. Brush it down with some coconut oil and place cut-side down on a baking sheet. Roast at 350°F for about 45 minutes, or until easily pierced by a fork. Scoop the flesh out and puree in a blender/food processor. This makes about the equivalent of a 15 oz can. Put the extra in your morning coffee!!

juice!

If you told 2013-Laura that by the end of her third year of med school she’d be buying bunches of kale and beets and mint and jankily juicing that ish with a blender and fine mesh strainer… she’d have attitude-punched you in the face with a pretty serious eyebrow raise.

Well, here we are.

Image

One of my residents turned me on to the idea, and after seeing how expensive store-bought juice cleanses are I was sure I could do it better and cheaper. I’m all about the liquid diet, usually in the form of smoothies and milkshakes and coffee, so I felt compelled to give it a shot. Futzing with the flavors and colors and stuffing actually healthy foods into semi-refreshing packages makes for some awesome summer kitchen playtime.

(also this is literally the first time in my life that my fridge’s vegetable drawer is full to the brim. hi mom.)

I haven’t had the guts (or low-stakes environment, or lack of hanger in the mornings) to do a real-boy juice cleanse yet, but I think I’ll get there soon. Mostly to see what kinds of pretty colors I can make my pee turn!

– L

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Recipe: green juice, red juice, cashew milk

Green:

  • 3-5 kale leaves, stems removed (I use red kale)
  • 1 handful spinach
  • 1 green apple, cored
  • 1 small or 1/2 large cucumber
  • 2 sprigs mint, stems removed
  • ~1 cup water or coconut water
  • (optional) 1 Bartlett pear, cored, or a few small chunks of pineapple

If you’re like me and don’t have a juicer:
Put in a blender. Turn it on. Once it looks more or less uniform, dump into a large fine mesh strainer over an appropriately sized bowl. Whisk into the mesh until all that’s left is pulp. Pour juice and enjoy!

Red:

  • 1/2 red beet, peeled
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled
  • 1 green apple, cored
  • 1 Bartlett pear, cored
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp chopped/grated ginger
  • ~1 cup water

Same as above?

Cashew milk:

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Dash cinnamon
  • ~1 tbsp honey, agave, whatever

Soak cashews in a bowl of tap water for at least 4 hours. Drain and rinse them well, then add to blender with water. Use less water for a thicker milk. Blend on low for a couple minutes, until smooth. Add other stuff. Chill before drinking because blending it will make it kind of warm.

Each recipe makes roughly 20 oz of juice.

miso salmon & veggie bowl

sweetpotatobroccoli

Guys! Spring is coming!

Which means ordering pad see euw in bulk from seamless is no. longer. fly.

How about this: a well-balanced bowl of grains and veggies and protein that’s actually kind of good for you and tastes so fancy that you start to feel guilty about wearing jeans (or pajamas, or no pants at all… because really, we’re adults now and we aren’t afraid of a little buttcheek anymore). Nice restaurants could serve this and impress you. A nice restaurant probably wouldn’t serve this to you in your underwear.

Cook-at-home BONUS!

salmon

Know what else is cool? After dropping some money ($15) on the base ingredients, thereby securing you delicious repeat dinners for weeks, each serving size is like $4 out of your pocket.

It also all comes together in less than an hour and I may or may not have eaten this like 6 times in the past three weeks.

Remember the part where I said this tastes fancy??

Yeah, my mind is blown, too.

– L

food 013

Recipe: miso salmon & veggie bowl

most of this recipe is straight from smitten kitchen.

For the bowl:

  • 1 cup dried rice (I used half brown, half wild red)
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1 head broccoli
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • 4 4-oz salmon fillets (I keep the skin on)
  • sesame seeds
  • pinch of ground ginger

For the dressing:

  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, minced/pressed
  • 2 tbsp white miso
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp honey
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400. Cook your rice however you like.
  2. Peel the sweet potato and cut into bite-sized cubes. Toss with 1 tbsp olive oil and spread in a single layer in a baking pan (I use my 9×13″ pyrex). Sprinkle with salt and pepper (don’t go nuts with the salt), and roast for 20 minutes.
  3. While potato is roasting, cut the broccoli into bite-sized pieces as well. When 20 minutes are up, add to the sweet potato and toss with a little more olive oil. Roast for another 10-20 minutes, until everything is tender.
  4. Prepare salmon fillets by seasoning with freshly ground pepper, ground ginger, and sesame seeds. Line a broiling pan with foil and place a well-greased wire rack on top. Lay fillets on the rack and stick under your broiler for about 10 minutes, flipping once if you want, until salmon is cooked through.
  5. While salmon is cooking (what a great multi-tasker you are!), combine dressing ingredients and mix well.
  6. Serve bowls with rice topped with veggies and salmon, with a drizzle of dressing over the whole thing.

Serves 4.

gluten-free, grain-free chocolate chip coconut almond muffins

almond muffins

When life gives you a winter full of snow storms, the latest of which cancels your board exams after you’ve been studying non-stop for the previous six weeks, leading you to spend a cumulative 3 hours on the phone waiting for a human to take you off ‘hold’, which never ends up happening, so instead you go to the website and suck up the $110 fee to reschedule your test for the following week, and then snow barely even happens so that by the time you wake up it’s just sort of sleet-misting and you don’t even have the luxury of going outside and frolicking in piles of snow, and your boyfriend’s classes aren’t canceled so he can’t even stay in and read you stories to make it a proper snow day…

you make muffins.

and stay in bed.

and play Hungry Shark.

I should have named this blog “How to eat your feelings.”

– L

almond muffin

Recipe: gluten-free, grain-free chocolate chip coconut almond muffins

Note: These taste like marzipan. I hope you like marzipan.

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups almond flour (I use Honeyville, available at Costco for cheaper I believe)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line a muffin tin with paper cups.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together until super soft and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes.
  3. Add the eggs in individually, mixing after each to fully incorporate. Mix in the extracts.
  4. Mix together the baking soda, salt, and almond flour. Add the mixture in thirds, alternating with half of the milk (flour, milk, flour, milk, flour). Toss in the chips and coconut and mix those in as well.
  5. Fill each muffin cup with 1/4 cup of batter. Sprinkle tops with extra coconut, if you like.
  6. Bake for ~25-30 minutes, until tops are golden and a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean.

Makes 12 muffins.