13 April 2011

food on the mind

so, i just realized that yesterday I posted a whole thing about how I have no motivation and then this morning I posted motivation tips. Hah! The latter was scheduled so I kind of just forgot when it was going to be posted... but still. ridiculous.

anyways, i've got food on my mind- even more than it usually is! I know i keep slipping it in here and there that I'm nervous/excited for this summer, but I've avoided really saying why. Now that the time is getting closer though, I'm gonna lay it out for you all :)

Every summer in mid-july my sis and I attend a sufi youth retreat for ages 16-29. It's 5 days long and always a total blast, and for the most part it's run by the youths that attend it. This year, my sis and I have picked up the baton from the wonderful people who have been leading things the last few years. Jenny has the real big job of being co-camp director and spiritual leader, while I have the less-crazy job of being head chef.

It's seriously a dream come true- I've been going to this camp and the family camp the follows it since I was 3 years old and the food is always one of the best things about it. Wholesome, organic, diverse, delicious. Cooking is one of my favorite things to do, especially when it's for other people... and the idea of getting paid for it suits me real nice! haha.

At the same time though, terrifying! I've helped cook at these camps before, but going from that to being head chef is a huge step to take. Luckily I've worked in restaurants and I've trained people so working in a high-pressure environment and having to tell people what to do shouldn't be too difficult. I've also already begun working on and testing out recipes- something my boyfriend has been very appreciative of while my bank account has not :) The thing that really terrifies me is the execution- I'm going to be heading to the camp literally hours after touching down in San Francisco from Greece. I'm depending on Stewart and a couple other people to transport a lot of the food to the campsite. I don't have the time or the money to make the volumes of these dishes that will be used at the camp ahead of time... so I'm just hoping my measurements work out. I hope everyone likes the food... I hope I don't crash and burn, basically.

Anyways, enough of that doubt! Here's the part where it gets fun for you guys... I have been revamping a lot of recipes I already cook often and that's led to some awesome discoveries. For example, last night I made a giant pan full of vegan paneer masala. It tasted just like the high-dairy high-fat version that I made on this a few months ago- only it was completely animal product free and way healthier! If you want to try it out, here are the changes to make to the recipe:
- instead of butter/ghee, use melted earth balance
- instead of making paneer, press all the water out of a block of extra firm tofu and cut it into cubes. While baking it (after it has marinaded) space the cubes out so they can brown nicely.
- use plain soy yogurt instead of regular yogurt (you can find it at whole foods and other natural food stores)
- Use plain, sugar free soymilk (on the ingredients it should just say soybeans and water. trader joes has a good kind that's only like 2 dollars a carton) instead of half and half

also, I made some sushi- yes, there is going to be sushi at camp! I'm only using veggies and smoked salmon though to avoid the whole raw fish danger. Also, there will be a vegetable sesame chow mein available for those weird people who don't like sushi. I don't want to give up all my recipes, but I will give you a kinda fun and different one that I wont be serving anyways! I wanted to make a spicy salmon roll, but I didn't have any sriracha for the spicy factor. The only hot sauce I had was tapatillo. So I ended up with a really yummy and definitely different mexican-flavored sushi roll! For instructions on how to make sushi rice/roll sushi check out my previous post here.

to make a spicy salmon roll with mexican flair, use 1-2 smoked salmon fillets. mince them until they are kind of a textured mush... but in a good way, you know? haha. mince up one clove of garlic and mix it in with the salmon. Grab some tapatillo, tobasco, cholulah, or your own favorite mexican hot sauce, and drizzle it all over the garlic/salmon mixture. use your knife to kind of chop the sauce into the salmon, until the whole thing is a brilliant red. taste and add more sauce if it isn't spicy enough. use the whole mixture to make one uber delicious sushi roll!
The spicy salmon rolls are the orange-ish ones. I also made a philly roll and a 'flagstaff' roll, which is what one of my fave local restaurants calls their vegetarian roll.

This week I've also made a fantastic vegan taco meat, vegan chili, and a couple other things... but those recipes are sticking with me for now :)

I'm sure as the april and may progress I'll have lots more fun photos and recipes to share with you guys :) Happy humpday!

1 comment:

  1. You're a freaking cooking monster!

    I've tried to make sushi once. It was kinda a fail. Love it though!