Thursday, December 16, 2010

Spiced Cocoa Bread Pudding

I am a big fan of the Ratty's new coffee station. This bread pudding is excellent for finals week. Why? It contains cinnamon, coffee, cocoa, and coconut. Cinnamon is supposed to boost your memory so you can fit more names and dates into your brain before 2 pm. Coffee will help you keep your eyes open while you study. Cocoa will make you feel as if you are falling in love-a good mood-uplifter after the exam. Coconut will remind you of tropical places and the holidays - yes, my friends, the end is in sight!

Spiced Cocoa Bread Pudding (a.k.a. Finals Week Bread Pudding)
1 slice soft bread roll with glazed top, cubed
1/2 cup milk
2 Tbsp coffee
cocoa powder
coconut flakes

Put bread in a bowl and fill to the brim with milk and a little bit of coffee. Add a dash of cinnamon and cocoa powder. Microwave on high for 1/5 minutes. Sprinkle on some coconut flakes and raisins. Dust with more cinnamon and cocoa powder, if desired, and enjoy!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Harvest Veggie Melt

On below-freezing days nothing hits the spot better than hot steamy veggies and melted cheese. Just look at that ooey cheesy broccoli goodness - it's calling your name.

Harvest Veggie Melt
raisins (optional)
shredded cheese
garden veggie pasta sauce

1. Gather veggies on a plate.
2. Drizzle with garden veggie pasta sauce.
3. Sprinkle cheese on top, cover and microwave for 2 minutes on high. Enjoy on a cold day.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Raymond's Crunchy Lettuce Chickpea Salad

All food is beautiful on the inside, wouldn't you agree? This one was thought up by our creative genius friend, Raymond, who insisted that it was ugly and I shouldn't take a picture of it. But I did, since I thought it was a pretty genius salad combination of crunchy, crispy, and protein-y elements.

Raymond's Crunchy Lettuce Chickpea Salad
dollop of chickpea salad (roots and shoots line)
crunchy crouton strips (is that what they're called?)

Mix everything together and enjoy!

Herb Baked Chicken Garden Salad

Sunday brunch getting repetitive, you say? Mix things up with a mixed greens salad!

Herb Baked Chicken Garden Salad
1 piece of Herb Baked Chicken*
mixed greens
baby tomatoes
olive oil and lemon wedge, if desired

Use a fork and knife to shred the chicken. Toss with other ingredients. A little squirt of lemon adds some nice contrast to the fat from the chicken, as do a shaking of salt/pepper.

*the drumstick pieces are the best. (but don't tell anyone I told you that)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Egg Salad and Cucumber Tea Sandwich

There's something about little crustless triangular sandwiches that just make you want to make a cup of tea and stick out your pinky while you sip it.

Egg Salad and Cucumber Tea Sandwich
2 slices whole wheat bread
egg salad
cream cheese (optional)

1. Cut crusts off of bread.
2. Spread egg salad and cream cheese on bread and top with cucumbers.
3. Make a sandwich and cut into four triangles. Be fancy.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Savory Spinach Tofu Wrap

Savory Spinach is delicious by itself, but downright scrumptious in a wrap. I mean, who can resist the green spinach-y cross section of a wrap filled with Savory Spinach? Your post-Thanksgiving protein/fat/sugar-laden digestive system will thank you.

Savory Spinach Tofu Wrap
1 herb (?) tortilla (the one with the greenish flecks in it)
vegan grilled Asian veggies
peanut butter
soy sauce
tofu (6-8 cubes)
savory spinach

1. Mix 2 Tbsp peanut butter with a tsp of soy sauce. Spread on flour tortilla. Drizzle with honey.
2. Put veggies, tofu, and spinach on tortilla. Wrap it up, cut in half, admire the cross-section. Enjoy!

Scallion Mashed Potatoes

An East-meets-West twist on a Thanksgiving classic.

Scallion Mashed Potatoes
1 baked potato
2 Tbsp sour cream
1 Tbsp sesame oil
splash of milk
1/4 cup scallions

Scrape out the insides of the potato and combine with the rest of the ingredients, minus the scallions. Stir in the scallions once the potato mixture is as smooth as you want it (I like it a bit chunky).

Friday, November 26, 2010

Cheesy Broccoli, Corn, and Carrots

We tried in vain to come up with a less cheesy name. This dish uses almost every color of the rainbow! Which means it's loaded with a variety of nutrients, right? It's just missing red, violet, and blue. Maybe we should've added tomatoes, eggplant, and...uh...blueberries? Or maybe those blue moon marshmallows from Lucky Charms...mmm, marshmallows and veggies.

Cheesy Broccoli, Corn, and Carrots
1 cup broccoli, broken into smaller florets
1 Tbsp basil-infused olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup corn
1/4 cup shredded carrots
2 Tbsp shredded cheddar cheese
2 Tbsp sour cream
2 Tbsp guacamole

1. Toss broccoli with basil-infused olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
2. Add corn, carrots, and cheese. Microwave for 2 minutes, or until veggies are just cooked.
3. Add a dollop each of sour cream and guacamole.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Lydia's Gourmet Hummus Dip

Thanks to Lydia Joukowsky for sending us this delicious recipe! I couldn't get pretzels or pita but if you're a fan of cucumbers then you'll love the combo of crunchy fresh veggie-ness with nutty creamy hummus-ness in this awesome appetizer. Super easy to put together, and that tablespoon of olive oil really does wonders to kick it up a notch.

Lydia's Gourmet Hummus Dip

1 cup(ish) of hummus
1 tablespoon of olive oil

1. Put hummus on to plate and flatten into a 1 inch puck using back of fork.
2. Stick the fork into the center of the puck and spin to cut a hole in the puck.
3. Pour olive oil into the hole; overflow of oil is good. For dippers: pretzels, carrots, pita, or any kind of bread is delicious!! Enjoy!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Baked Chicken and Garden Greens

Why are they called garden greens? Do they grow in your garden? Maybe someone just made it up because mesclun mix didn't sound appetizing enough. Anyhow, these leaves are pretty delicious especially when tossed with cranberries and pumpkin seeds, and a chicken leg! You can add a simple vinegar and oil dressing if you like; if not, it's delicious as is.

Baked Chicken and Garden Greens
1 bed of garden greens
pumpkin seeds
chicken leg
vinegar and oil (optional)

1. Put everything on one plate. Drizzle with vinegar and oil, if desired.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Berry Patch Coffee Cake

A fun way to dress up your coffee cake and pretend it's spring in the middle of this lovely fall weather.

Berry Patch Coffee Cake
1 slice of coffee cake
plain yogurt
shredded coconut
blueberry jam
raspberry jam

1. Garnish the coffee cake with yogurt, coconut, blueberry jam, and cranberries.
2. Dot the plate with raspberry jam.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Honey Glazed Pork with Scallion Mashed Potatoes and Sesame Green Beans

An "Asian" twist on roast pork and potatoes, using sesame, scallions, and honey as flavor accents.

Don't forget that this Thursday is the AAHM Ratty Dinner special!

Check out the AAHM Food Fact of the Day on your left as you enter the Ratty!

Honey Glazed Pork with Scallion Mashed Potatoes and Sesame Green Beans
sesame green beans
1 baked potato
2 Tbsp scallions
2 Tbsp sour cream
1 tsp sesame oil
1 slice of roast pork
drizzle of honey

1. Prepare the mashed potatoes: Cut a baked potato in half and scoop out the insides into a bowl. Use a fork to mash potatoes with scallions, sour cream, and sesame oil.
2. Arrange green beans on plate. Press the mashed potatoes into a small cup, and invert onto beans. Place sliced roast pork on top of mashed potatoes and drizzle with honey. Enjoy!

Monday, November 8, 2010

"Oyako" Chicken & Egg Sandwich

"Oyako" means parent and child in Japanese - if you've seen "oyako donburi" in Japanese restaurants, you'll know what I'm talking about (a rice dish topped with chicken and egg - bonus points if you can figure out which is the "parent" and which is the "child")

"Oya-ko" Chicken & Egg Sandwich
1 slice of whole grain 7 Stars bread
1 leg piece of spicy herb-baked chicken
mixed salad greens
1 egg over light
cranberries for garnish

Take the meat off of the chicken leg and arrange on bread. Top with salad greens, fried egg, and cranberries. Enjoy!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Cracker Appetizer

Sometimes it's fun to play with your food. Does anyone eat appetizers in the Ratty? No? Oh c'mon, why else would the Ratty so thoughtfully provide us with ham, crackers, sliced cucumbers, farm fresh apples, three kinds of peanut butter, and grape tomatoes in festive colors?

Cracker Appetizer
2 wheat crackers
peanut butter
grape tomatoes, halved

1. Cut out a wedge of apple and spread peanut butter on a cracker. Top the peanut butter cracker with the apple.
2. Cut a cucumber into a flower shape and put it on top of a cracker with ham.
3. Garnish the plate with grape tomato halves.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Spinach Mushroom Bacon Salad - Olivia's Organics Recipe Contest

Do you know about Olivia's Organics salad greens? They are sold at Eastside Marketplace and Whole Foods, and are delicious! Olivia's Organics is hosting a recipe contest, so in the spirit of creative healthy eating, consider submitting your favorite recipe! Details below.

Spinach Mushroom Bacon Salad
baby spinach
bacon, broken up
broccoli, broken into smaller pieces
hard-boiled egg, peeled and roughly chopped
chopped tomatoes
chopped roasted red bell peppers

1. Microwave mushrooms, bacon, and broccoli for 100 seconds or until mushrooms and broccoli are just cooked through. (Tip: Turn a plate upside down to cover everything and prevent it from drying out in the microwave. Careful when removing it! Steam hurts.)
2. Toss everything together.


Olivia’s Organics Healthier Holiday Recipe Contest

This Is Not Your Grandmother’s Holiday Casserole!

CHELSEA, MA (Oct, 2010) – The ingredients for happy holidays begin with family, friends and, of course, delicious food! This holiday season Olivia’s Organics is inviting home chefs to get creative and share their new healthy holiday recipes, competing for 52 weeks worth of Olivia’s Organics salads. The prize, valued at approximately $200.00 is a great way to kick off the New Year!

Olivia’s Organics is ravenous for recipes that offer flavorful and healthy alternatives to traditional heavy holiday meals, from golden roasted turkey with lighter fixings, to putting a nutritious twist on grandma’s holiday casserole. In order to be considered, recipes must incorporate at least one of Olivia’s Organics fresh greens. The complete line of Olivia’s Organics Salads featuring: 50/50 blend, Baby Arugula, Asian Salad, Herb Salad, Baby or Crispy Romaine, Baby Spinach, Spring Mix, Sweet Baby Lettuce Blend and Italian Crunch.

Olivia’s Organics salads are cultivated exclusively on certified organic farms in the U.S. and conveniently available at grocery stores and supermarkets across the Northeast. Selecting Olivia’s salads help not only your body but also the environment. Olivia’s Organics gives back a portion of all proceeds to the Olivia's Organics Charitable Foundation, benefiting children in the communities where products are sold.

How to Enter:

Start by going to the Olivia’s Organics Facebook page and join the community – say hi, learn about our organic greens, think about new delicious and nutritious dishes to serve as part of your own holiday spread and create a Healthier Holiday Recipe. All recipes must be original and of course include our salad greens.

Judges will choose one first place contest winner who will be awarded the grand prize of 52 weeks’ worth of Olivia’s Organics salads, and two runners up who will each receive $50 in Olivia’s Organics salad coupons. Everyone who enters will receive a coupon good for a free sample of Olivia's Organics salad greens. For more information about the Olivia’s Organics Summer Harvest Recipe contest, visit us on Facebook.


The deadline for submissions is December 20, 2010. The winner will be notified by January 6, 2011. All decisions are final.

About Olivia’s Organics

For more than 70 years Olivia’s family has been bringing the freshest, best quality, all-natural tender leaf lettuce, spinach and celery hearts to consumers in the Northeast. In 2006 the Olivia’s Organics brand was born as a way to provide the finest certified organic tender leaf salads possible to consumers. Olivia’s Organics farmers, handpicked by the family, cultivate their fields using only earth friendly, organic methods. The salad varieties are locally packaged in Chelsea, Massachusetts following the highest standards for freshness and food safety, with 100 percent traceability. Its packaging is reusable, contains no BPA and is made from recyclable materials. As committed as Olivia’s Organics is to quality produce, the company is equally committed to investing in the lives of our children. As such, a portion of all profits support the Olivia’s Organics Charitable Foundation, benefiting community-based children's charities where products are sold. To learn more about Olivia’s Organics and its foundation please visit:

Monday, November 1, 2010

Vegetarian Egg Rolls with Josh's Sauce

Did you know that November is Asian/Asian American History Month? Celebrate with Asian food at the Ratty!

In case you haven't heard, the AAHM special dinner will be held next Thursday (11/11) from 4:00 - 7:30 at the Ratty. The menu will feature dishes from East, Southeast, and South Asian Cuisine, including Mango Lassi and Green Tea Ice Cream for dessert - don't miss it!

Credit goes to our dear friend Josh for inventing this sauce - the secret ingredient? Ketchup! Although the version I tried at lunch today didn't have honey in it, Josh recommends adding a little bit of sweetness to balance out the tangy/salty flavor of the sauce - try it with honey and you likely will not be disappointed.

Vegetarian Egg Rolls with Josh's Sauce

vegetarian egg roll(s)
steamed broccoli (optional)
Josh's sauce:
2 Tbsp ketchup
1.5 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp peanut butter
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp honey (optional)

Mix the sauce ingredients together until smooth. Slice egg roll in half and serve with sauce and broccoli on the side.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Chicken Salad Bacon Sandwich

The Ratty does a pretty special chicken salad with grapes called "Rhode Island Chicken Salad." To honor the spirit of local eating, we sandwiched it between Seven Stars wheat bread and added lettuce and bacon. The sweetness of the grapes, creaminess of the mayonnaise-rich chicken salad, fresh crispness of the lettuce, salty bacon-y-ness of the bacon, and earthy soft wheaty bread really bring this sandwich together.

Chicken Salad Bacon Sandwich
2 slices Seven Stars Bakery wheat bread
Rhode Island Chicken Salad

1. Spread chicken salad on bread.
2. Top with lettuce and bacon.
3. Cut in half and enjoy!

Almost Vegan Burrito

I almost called this "Vegan Burrito" but realized that it has sour cream! Oops. But you can still make it vegan - just omit the sour cream and replace it with something else that is creamy, like hummus!

Almost Vegan Burrito
1 whole wheat tortilla
1 serving of vegan roasted veggies (peppers, zucchini, tomatoes, onions)
sour cream
refried beans

1. Pile everything onto a wrap.
2. Wrap it up.
3. Cut in half.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Gnocchi with Mushrooms and Arugula

The gnocchi at the Ratty makes me happy. Did you know that it's pronounced "neeYAW-kee"? If you are curious how to pronounce all the other Italian dishes, feel free to take the trolley down to Federal Hill's Mediterraneo, a cute little restaurant where they post their menu on the window, with pronunciations for everything!

Gnocchi with Mushrooms and Arugula
1 bed of arugula
1 serving of gnocchi alla sorrentina
1/3 cup sliced mushrooms
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

1. Microwave mushrooms and olive oil in a bowl until mushrooms are just cooked through, about 1 minute.
2. Plate the arugula, gnocchi, and mushrooms, and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tortellini Soup with Cheese Crisp and Greens

When something is good, there no need to fuss around with it too much. Tortellini soup is an excellent example. The cheese crisp was invented on accident when we noticed that shredded cheese melted in the microwave tends to dry out and form a thin crispy cracker that sticks to the side of the bowl. The key is to use a very tiny amount of cheese and melt it in a clean bowl, and monitor it in the microwave so it doesn't burn. You want it just golden around the edges and still creamy white in the center! Cheese crisps make great garnishes for soups and salads.

Tortellini Soup with Cheese Crisp and Greens
1 bowl of Ratty tortellini soup
7 shreds of shredded cheese
mixed greens

1. Sprinkle the cheese in a soup bowl. Microwave until the cheese is browned on the edges.
2. Remove from the microwave, wait 1 minute, and peel off the cheese crisp.
3. Garnish the bowl of soup with greens and cheese crisp.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sunny Arugula

I love Sunday brunches, especially when it's 65 degrees and sunny outside and the Ratty surprises you with arugula at the salad bar.

Sunny Arugula
1 egg, over light, with cheese
olive oil

Arrange arugula in center of plate; drizzle with olive oil. Place the egg on top, pierce the yolk, and get a bite of egg, cheese, and greens on a fork. Repeat.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Raspberry Jelly Roll and Cream

A delightful dessert using ingredients from the V-dub!

Raspberry Jelly Roll and Cream
1 slice raspberry jelly roll cake
chocolate sauce
sweetened strawberries
sweetened blueberries
whipped cream

1. Get a slice of cake.
2. Top with fruit and drizzle with chocolate.
3. Garnish the plate with whipped cream.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Vdub Hummus Wrap

The hummus at the Vdub is really good; 'specially in a wrap.

Vdub Hummus Wrap
1 whole wheat tortilla
1 spoonful of Vdub hummus (the kind with the green bits in it)
2 Tbsp tabouli
2 Tbsp feta
2 Tbsp diced onion
2 leaves lettuce

1. Spread hummus on wrap (I like to do a horizontal streak of it on the bottom third).
2. Add tabouli, onions, lettuce, and feta.
3. Roll up wrap carefully. Slice in half and enjoy.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Vegan Fagioli Soup with Spinach and Cheese

cold weather + people coughing around you + rain + tingly sensation at the back of your throat = hot soup season

This one is wonderful on a cold, drizzly day. Not that the Vegan Fagioli Soup isn't delicious on its own, but there's something about melted cheese that just gets me every time. A word of warning, though: please don't try to gobble this down in the 2 minutes before Chem conference. I tried; the soup was very hot.

Vegan Fagioli Soup with Spinach and Cheese
1 spoonful savory spinach (1/2 cup)
2 ladelfuls Vegan Fagioli Soup (3/4 cup)
1 slice provolone

1. Get the spinach in a bowl.
2. Get the soup.
3. Place a slice of Provolone on top.
4. Microwave for 40 seconds or until cheese is melted. Enjoy slowly on a cold autumn day.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Cobb Salad

Whoever came up with the bacon, lettuce, tomato combo was a genius. According to Wikipedia,

"The Cobb salad is a main-dish garden salad made from chopped salad greens (head lettuce, watercress, chicory, and romaine), tomato, crisp bacon, boiled or roasted chicken breast, hard-boiled egg, avocado, chives, red-wine vinaigrette and Roquefort cheese. The salad was invented in the 1930s at the Hollywood Brown Derby restaurant, where it became a signature dish. It is named for the restaurant's owner, Robert Howard Cobb, first cousin of baseball legend Ty Cobb. Stories vary as to whether the salad was invented by Cobb or by his chef."

Interesting, no? This version sadly does not include chicken breast, avocado, chives, red-wine vinegrette, and Roquefort cheese, but it is still pretty delicious.

Cobb Salad
1 bed of romaine lettuce
chopped hard boiled egg
chopped tomatoes
torn up bacon
corn, zucchini, red onion medley
black beans
oil and vinegar (optional; we didn't use it because bacon provides enough salt, flavor, and fat)

1. Plate the lettuce.
2. Top with the other ingredients.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Broccoli Mushroom Feta Edamame

Aw, stop it already, we know we're just too good at the whole recipe naming thing. A great combination of flavors, and you can use it to turn into the Cucumber Hummus Bite.

Broccoli Mushroom Feta Edamame
olive oil (optional)

1. Combine everything on a plate. Cover with another plate.
2. Microwave on high for 120 seconds, or until broccoli is bright green and cooked through, mushrooms have softened, and feta has melted.

Cucumber Hummus Bite

Cucumber and hummus are just made for each other. Aren't they adorable? And the baby broccoli floret, c'mon, you have to admit he is cute - not to mention delicious!

Is it weird to anthropomorphize food and talk about eating it in the same sentence?

Cucumber Hummus Bite
1 sliced cucumber
1 dab of hummus
1 sliced mushroom with feta (microwaved)
1 cute broccoli floret (make sure it's cute - if not, the results will be rather disappointing)

1. Spread cucumber with hummus.
2. Gently embed a mushroom slice and broccoli into the hummus.
3. Bite, chew and swallow.

Hummus Pita Wrap

Sometimes the simple things are the best. (Simplicity is such a nice excuse to be lazy, isn't it?)

Hummus Pita Wrap
1 whole wheat pita
feta cheese
baby spinach
cucumber slices
tomato slices

1. Spread hummus on pita.
2. Top with the other ingredients.
3. Fold in half.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Tropical Sunrise Drink

On a hot day, what could possibly beat a construction-worker-vest-colored drink with a cheesy name?

Tropical Sunrise Drink
cranberry juice
passionfruit guava juice
segmented orange and grapefruit

1. Get a cup of ice.
2. Dispense 1 second of each juice.
3. Garnish with orange and grapefruit segments.
4. Pretend you are on a beach in Hawaii, sit back, and watch your worries fade into the sunset.

Broccoli Chicken Salad

This salad was almost too big for the plate.

Broccoli Chicken Salad
1 plate of mixed greens
broccoli, steamed
red bell peppers
northern beans
1 baked chicken thigh, shredded
Asian Sesame Ginger Dressing (recipe follows)

1. Combine everything on a plate.

Asian Sesame Ginger Dressing
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp old-fashioned peanut butter
1 Tbsp Hoisin Sauce
3 turns of ground black pepper (in the soup station)
1/4 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp onion powder (3 shakes)
1/8 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp honey (optional; I didn't put it b/c peanut butter was sweet enough)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Rainbow Pinwheel Sandwiches

Great as an appetizer or lunch, and embarrassingly easy to make. Feel free to mix and match wrap flavors, cheeses, meats, and veggies; you really can't go wrong with any combo.

Rainbow Pinwheel Sandwiches
1 tortilla sheet
sour cream (optional)
cheddar, swiss, or american cheese
sliced turkey or ham
mixed greens or lettuce
bacon (optional)

1. Spread sour cream on tortilla, if using.
2. Layer on: cheese, sliced meat, greens.
3. Roll up sandwiches -- not too tightly or too loosely. Stick 5 toothpicks in the roll, spaced evenly apart. Cut out the ends and cut the roll into five sandwiches.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Local Dinner: Mile High Apple Pie with Vanilla Ice Cream

Words cannot describe the scrumptiousness of this dessert.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Russian Dressing Salad

The color of this dressing is reminiscent of that pink color used in Dr. Seuss' Cat in the Hat storybooks.

Russian Dressing Salad

2 Tbsp sour cream
2 Tbsp ketchup
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 tsp raspberry vinaigrette
sprinkling of black pepper

kidney beans

Mix the dressing together in a small cup and drizzle over salad.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Salmon with Arugula and Mashed Sweet Potato

We owe a lot to the Ratty on this one - didn't do much except put a few things together, but hey, you gotta treat that salmon with respect.

Salmon with Arugula and Mashed Sweet Potato
1 sweet potato
1 piece of salmon
arugula (from the agnolotti with lemon dish)

1. Peel the sweet potato into a bowl, and mash with a fork.
2. Plate the sweet potato, salmon, and arugula in that order.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Spinach Pie "Wrap" Quesadilla

The "secret" ingredient? Raisins! Yes, they're good for you and yes, they're usually found in granola, but if you're up for something a little different (and dare we say delicious) give this one a try -- the sweetness of dried grapes goes fabulously with the savoriness of melted provolone and hot spinach in a lightly toasted wrap.

Spinach Pie "Wrap" Quesadilla.

1 whole-wheat flour tortilla
lots of baby spinach (about 2 generous "grabs" with the tongs)
1 slice provolone cheese
1/4 cup shredded cheese
3 Tbsp raisins

1. Place provolone cheese on tortilla. Pile on the spinach, shredded cheese, and raisins.
2. Fold carefully into a "wrap" -- it will be rather puffy but the spinach will wilt down.
3. Place in a pre-heated panini press and let it do its thing for 5 min, or until golden brown grill marks appear.
4. Slice in half and enjoy.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Broccoli Tuna Melt Salad

This hot/cold salad was inspired by Meeting St's gigantic Broccoli Tuna Melt sandwich. I never manage to eat those sandwiches properly anyway, so this "deconstructed" version of the sandwich lets you mix everything together and eat with a fork, like a salad.

Broccoli Tuna Melt Salad

2-3 lettuce leaves
3 slices tomato
1 scoop tuna salad
5-6 broccoli florets
6-7 mushroom slices
1/4 cup shredded cheese
3 onion rings
1 slice thick honey wheat bread

1. Arrange lettuce and tuna salad on a plate. Cut tomato slices in half and arrange around tuna salad.
2. Microwave broccoli and mushroom on a plate with 1 Tbsp basil infused olive oil and 1 Tbsp water (2 min, cover with another plate, on high).
3. Sprinkle cheese over cooked broccoli and microwave another 30 seconds or until melted.
4. Arrange broccoli/mushroom/cheese mixture over tuna salad.
5. Slice onion rings in half and cube the bread into 6-7 "croutons." Arrange over top and enjoy.

Tuna Edamame Salad

Tired of the same old salad dressings? Love asparagus? Love creamy stuff? Then try drizzling a ladle of creamy asparagus soup on your mixed greens!

Tuna Edamame Salad
1 plate of mixed greens
1/4 cup feta cheese
1/4 cup tuna
1/4 cup edamame
1 ladle of creamy asparagus soup

1. Assemble salad and drizzle soup on top.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Tilapia on Spinach with White Space

Ah... white space. Try it at on your plate at the Ratty and you may find that your chewing becomes ever so slightly more thoughtful, and your conversations become a tad bit more....refined.

Tilapia on Spinach
1 Tilapia filet
bowlful of baby spinach (packed tightly)
2 Tbsp Basil infused olive oil
1 Tbsp vegan bean stew
1-2 Tbsp Tilapia provencal chopped tomatoes & capers

1. Cook the spinach. Pack the baby spinach into a bowl and drizzle olive oil on top. Cover with a small plate and microwave on high for 2 minutes. Remove from microwave CAREFULLY (use napkins as "pot-holders")
2. Arrange spinach in a neat pile in center of plate.
3. Put tilapia filet on top of cooked spinach
4. Garnish with vegan bean stew and tilapia provencal veggies. Buon appetito!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Creamy Edamame Pasta Salad

You know how you sometimes get into a habit of doing things the same way every day? I always get into "breakfast habits" -- soymilk-cereal-fruit, soymilk-cereal-fruit, soymilk-cereal...

Or "lunch habits" -- sandwich, sandwich, sandwich...

Or "dinner habits" -- pasta and marinara, pasta and marinara, pasta and... cream of asparagus soup? Add in some edamame for protein and veggies for vitamins.

Creamy Edamame Pasta Salad

whole wheat penne
spoonful of edamame (green soybeans)
spoonful of diced tomatoes (burrito bar)
spoonful of scallions
small spoonful of raisins
spoonful of sliced zucchini (salad bar)
1 ladle of Cream of Asparagus soup
salt & pepper

1. Gather pasta and veggies on a plate.
2. Spoon soup on top.
3. Mix with a fork and add salt/pepper to taste.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Savory Waffle Sandwiches

While these were good, during the time it takes to split the waffle open and make the sandwich, the waffle crust goes from satisfyingly crispy to disappointingly soggy. Still, the flavors were pretty good, and it's worth a try if you are a waffle fan. The good news is we have a secret genius idea for maintaining the crispy crust of a waffle sandwich...stay tuned!

Savory Waffle Sandwiches
1/2 spoonful of waffle batter
1 lettuce
1/4 cup tuna salad
1 slice swiss cheese
1/4 cup garbanzo bean salad (pre-made at the V-dub...plain garbanzo beans with some dressing and roasted red peppers work too)

1. Pour waffle batter into half of the waffle iron.
2. Make waffle.
3. Cut in half, and split each half into two without burning off fingers.
4. Fill with fillings.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Almost Seven Layer Dip

...Because it's six layers, unless you count the plate. Just layer it in the mug, invert, remove the mug, and viola! A happy little cylinder of food. But in the recent sweltering atmosphere of the Ratty, if you don't attack the dip immediately it will collapse into an amorphous blob. Still delicious, nonetheless.

Almost Seven Layer Dip
diced tomatoes
pinto beans
shredded cheese
sour cream

1. Layer the tomatoes, guacamole, pinto beans, scallions, cheese, and sour cream in a mug, in that order. It helps to alternate layers of "mortar" with...uh...bricks?
2. Invert mug onto a plate.
3. Remove mug carefully.
4. Serve with crackers or chips or toasted pita bread or cucumbers.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookie Plum Sundae

The soft serve machine at the Ratty has gotten an intense workout lately. While we're at it, why not make a fancier dessert? Plums are in season, and apparently so are giant chocolate chip cookies. I don't know why the cocoa puffs are there. You can leave them out if you prefer no crunchy interferences with your creamy cool soft serve.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Plum Sundae
1 giant chocolate chip cookie
1 plum
1 split-second dispense of Cocoa Puffs
1 not-so-split-second dispense of vanilla soft serve

1. Cut the cookie into eighths, like a sliced pizza.
2. Cut the plum into eighths, like a...sliced plum.
3. Add the cocoa puffs.
4. Add the soft serve, attempting to create a pretty swirl. Evidently, we were not so successful.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Grilled Chicken Rice Pilaf

Colorful things are fun to eat. Like Lucky Charms. Wanna know why? It's because long long ago, when Geico Neaderthals roamed the earth, the ones whose brains were wired to be attracted to colorful fruits and veggies and rainbow squirrels reaped the nutritional benefits that these foods had, whereas their color-insensitive cousins missed out on the essential vitamins and died before they could reproduce. So, eat colorful things. Just make sure they are naturally colorful - artificial colors don't have nutrients.

Grilled Chicken Rice Pilaf
1 grilled chicken breast, torn into pieces
broccoli florets
yellow corn kernels
brown rice
garlic infused olive oil
black pepper

1. Mix everything together.
2. Cover with a plate and microwave for 1 minute.
3. Sprinkle with black pepper.