Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Cornbread strikes again

Monday couldn’t have been a better day for rolling up the sleeves and rolling out new recipes. I was feeling better but not well enough to get to the gym or run, so I had some time to kill in the kitchen

For those of you not up-to-the-minute on my health (you can follow it on the Headline News ticker, ESPN’s scrolling bottom line and the sign of that dude at Cesar Chavez and I-35 in Austin), it stumbled a bit last week. Just some bad crud, y’all. And, since I’m a guy (read: stupid) I didn’t rush to the doc immediately for a pill-based solution. No, that would belie my stubbornness (charming, ain’t it). Instead I’ve gone through a health roller coaster, a wellness waterslide if you will. For those familiar with the best place to spend a preteen summer afternoon circa 1988 — Wet ‘n’ Wild — you’ll no doubt know what I mean when I say one minute I was all “Pirate Ship” chillin’ and the next I was totally “Atlantic Panic.” Totally.

Anyway, I’m feeling better (don’t let my rambling fool you) so I finally got around to making a really good PPK-approved Potato and Black Bean Soup.

Potato and Black Bean Soup
6 cups vegetable broth, canned or made from bouillon cubes
10-12 medium mushrooms, quartered
1/2 cup shredded carrots
4 medium potatoes, cut into 1" cubes
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14.50 oz) can whole tomatoes, cut up
1 Tbs fresh cilantro, chopped
1/2 tsp cajun seasoning

In a large saucepan, combine broth, mushrooms, onion, carrots, and potatoes.
Cook over medium high heat until mixture comes to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally until potatoes are just tender; about 10-12 minutes.
Stir in beans, tomatoes, cilantro, and seasoning.
Cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through.

There’s a whole lotta good stuff in there already, but you can add more veggies if ya like (you need to clean out your fridge anyway, right?). I added celery cause that’s how I roll and I said nay to “cajun seasoning.” In it’s place I pinched cumin, chili powder and wee pinched cayenne to taste. And the timing for this soup couldn’t be better. I’ve got a few more servings that will make the recent drop in temperature a bit more tolerable.

Alongside a brave new bowl of soup, I kicked out some kickass Vegan Cornbread straight from the “Veganomicon.” What makes this batch the best is simple — it’s the skillet. In fact, henceforth, I will never again make cornbread without a skillet. It’s the baking equivalent of a broken-in biker jacket or blue jeans. It’s just a classic that works. That said, I’m not a big fan of pie slices (‘cept actual pie, pizza pie and Trivial Pursuit pie). However, it’s not a deal breaker. The bread’s only gonna get crumbled in the soup any damn way.

Happy New Year, y’all.


marbargarbo said...

I'm going to try this.

You should try it too, then we could compare pics ... :D

- MM

Robert Tracy said...

Sounds good. I'll give it a shot.

marbargarbo said...

I baked it. Check it out. You're going to want to make it right away. :D