So, a few weeks ago I was at the market and there was a package of Uncle Ben’s Taco rice in the Manager’s Special section. I thought, hey, why not? It might be good. I prepared it according to package directions on Tuesday. When Spane tasted it, he made a face. I tasted it, and I made a face, too. I even put Tapatio on it, and sour cream, and it still tasted like dirty, old socks. Mind you, I’ve never tasted dirty, old socks, but I imagine they probably taste like that rice – horrible. Moral of the story, don’t by Uncle Ben’s flavored rice.
After that debacle, I was determined to make good Mexican rice, but my stove, Bertha, is on the fritz. I had to find another way to make it.
I also had a pork loin roast, and I wanted to marinate it, but, it too, could not be roasted in Bertha. I had to find another way for that as well.
This afternoon when I was at the local store, I had a taste for Mexican food. I already had frozen taquitos in my freezer (I’m too lazy to make them myself), so all I needed was avocado. Well, surprise, surprise my little store didn’t have any, so I decided to make the white sauce similar to the fish taco white sauce at Rubio’s.
I also had some cabbage in the refrigerator. I love cabbage and it’s very good with Mexican food. I picked up a can of black beans so I could make the same black bean dip I used for my Black Bean Tacos.
Last night I was watching an ancient Iron Chef, from the original series where everything was dubbed, May 7, 1999. It was a famous chef in Japan, Takeshi Ōkubo, who specialized in Chinese cuisine, up against the Chinese Iron Chef, Chen Kenichi. The Iron Chef did not win :-(, but it did give me some ideas for dinner tonight.
It’s been hot and muggy in Los Angeles, and I really don’t want to get my house hotter than it is – the evaporative cooler (aka swamp cooler) is going full blast. Nesco to the rescue.
I had some chicken thighs in the freezer, and yogurt, and I was getting a whole bunch of spices when I saw the curry jar and decided to use it. That’s when the Chinese aspect hit me, I also have a long forgotten jar of Chinese Five Spice powder.
We have Lenten Soup Supper at our church during Lent, and I went last year, but this year, I wanted to try my hand at lentil soup. So, I went to the local Armenian store, and looked for lentils.
There were two kinds, red and yellow/brown available, and I did not know which was better, so I asked the proprietor what she used, and asked her how she made lentil soup. I was surprised when she said to add cilantro (with her pronunciation, I was surprised that I figured out that it was cilantro at all!), but happy because I really like that herb.
So, without further ado, is the recipe. I served it the garlic bread and it was a hit.
Recipe: Lentil Soup with Cilantro
1 tablespoon Olive oil
1 Onion chopped
1 Carrot chopped
1 Red pepper chopped
2 tablespoons Cilantro chopped
1/2 bag Small Lentils
2 teaspoons Chicken bouillon
3 cup Water
2 Small potatoes chopped
4 Small tomatoes cut in quarters
1 teaspoon Ketchup
1/2 cup Sour cream
Heat the olive oil in a large pot, then add the onion, carrot, and red pepper. Saute until the onion is translucent, then add the cilantro. Pick through the lentils, being careful to remove any sticks or stones. Combine the bouillion with the water and add that to the pot. Let simmer until the lentils are al dente, then add the potatoes. Simmer until the potatoes are almost done, then add the tomatoes and ketchup. Simmer until the potatoes and carrot are completely soft.