i get paid for this!

today is the first of (hopefully many) more days of ingredient testing and recipe research– and cooking and baking- for my job at the farmer’s market stand.  my boss, who tends towards random ideas, decided that today, rather than selling at the market, i was to take her ingredients and test and document recipes. the ingredients she wants to to focus on?

work in progress....

pineapple & maui onions.

it might seem pretty random, but there are some good reasons for this seemingly odd combination.   firstly, we always have pineapples and onions at the market, and many of our customers (predominately tourists) don’t have a full kitchen, and thus need some simple recipes they can do with a small or non-existent kitchen.

thinking about pineapple and onions as the foundation, i grabbed some mangoes, limes, and some chilies to add to whatever i decide to make.  to begin my journey i created a random soundtrack of enon, clap your hands and say yeah, first aid kit, and emily wells, and set about many cookbooks from which i now begin the testing.  i started with veganomicon, vegan world fusion cuisine and my own compiled cookbook and was surprised to find heaps of recipes for both pineapple and onion, and simple ones at that.

the list of recipes that came out of the kitchen today is pretty long!

from veganomicon:

pineapple cashew quinoa stir-fry

so good! i was dubious, because the list of ingredients is rather eclectic, but it all comes together quite nicely.  i made some subtractions and some substitutions, and i will make these documented changes next time i make it- but overall, very clever and tasty.  the recipe says to cook the quinoa in pineapple juice and water, with a dash of salt.  this mixture alone is pretty stellar- don’t skip this part- it really brings a nice layer of flavor to the dish.

1 cup pineapple juice (drained from pureed pineapples or elsewhere)
1 cup water
1 cup quinoa (red or white, or mix)
dash of shoyu or braggs.

cook this first. add the liquid to a saucepan, bring to a boil, then add in the quinoa. turn the heat to low and simmer for 12-15 minutes. let it cool on the side.

4 ounces chopped raw almonds or cashew pieces
3 tbsp peanut oil
1 maui onion, sliced  (1/2 cup total)
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
2 tsp minced ginger
1/2 cup basil and/or cilantro, chopped
2 cups fresh pineapple, chopped into teeny pieces
1/4 cup vegetable stock
3 tbsp soy sauce
lime for squeezing

chop and prepare all the ingredients before you start cooking. toast the nuts in a dry pan until they ‘pop-‘ about 15 minutes. remove from the pan and add to the cooked quinoa.   in a big skillet heat up the oil, and add the onions and garlic; cook until well done (about 10 minutes) then add the chili and ginger; cook this for just a few minutes, then add the basil and the pineapple. cook this mixture for about 5 minutes then add the liquid ingredients all at once. simmer for one minute, then add the quinoa + nut mixture and stir well. squeeze some lime on top and enjoy!

from vegan world fusion cuisine

pineapple mac nut salsa
a winner in the boss and customer taste test!

1 large pineapple, cut into slices or rounds (easier for grilling)
3/4 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1/2 cup red bell pepper (optional)
1/4 cup maui onion, chopped fine
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp cilantro, chopped fine
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp cider vinegar
half jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
pinch cayenne pepper (optional)

grill the pineapple in the skillet or cast iron pan until browned on both sides, about 15 minutes.  set the pineapple aside and let cool; mix all other ingredients in a big bowl.  when pineapple is cool enough to touch, chop into very small pieces and incorporate into other ingredients.  adjust salt, pepper and spice to suit your tastes!

pineapple-citrus topping for cheesecake
an easy sweet & tangy topping for cakes, muffins, pancakes, or ice cream.

3/4 cup water with 1 tbsp lemon juice and 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 cup of chopped or pureed pineapple
1/3 cup honey, agave, or sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder dissolved in 2 tbsp water

mix all ingredients (except cornstarch + water) in a saucepan and heat until bubbles form, about five minutes. then add the cornstarch (or arrowroot) mixture and stir well until thick, usually just about 30 seconds.  remove from heat and continue stirring for about a minute.  if you have a processor this will make a very thick sauce, but it also make a great chunky sauce with chopped pineapple.

from other sources:

mango coconut sauce (from delicious living)
i’ve wanted to make this sauce for a long time- and i have not idea why it took me so long- this is amazingly tasty and easy- and raw too!

1 clove garlic
1 small chili, seeded
1 medium or 3 small mangoes, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 tsp fresh grated ginger
1/4 cup cilantro
1 tsp pepper + a pinch of salt

pulse the garlic, chili and ginger in the food processor, then add the skinned mangoes, coconut milk and blend until smooth. add the cilantro and pulse a bit more- that’s it!  if you don’t have a food processor, simply mince the garlic, chili, ginger, and cilantro finely.   you can mash the mangoes by hand or with a fork.  serve with tofu, rice, and greens for a yummy healthy dinner.

pineapple upside down cake (adapted from the lodge cast iron page!)

for the topping:

6 tablespoons unsalted butter
¾ cup packed light brown sugar
5 rings of fresh sliced pineapple

for the batter:

½ cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup maui sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp coconut-flavored rum or bourbon
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1½ tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
½ cup unsweetened pineapple juice or water with a splash of lemon
¼ cup coconut flakes for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. to make the topping: melt the butter in a pan over medium heat. add the brown sugar and melt, stirring until bubbles appear. pour this mix into an 8 x 8 pan, then gently lay the pineapple rings in the sauce.
for the batter: beat the butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy.  add the sugar and beat until creamy. add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. add the vanilla and liquor. in a separate bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. add half of the flour mixture to the egg mixture and whip just until blended.  add the liquid and mix gently, then add remaining flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated- do not overmix.

spoon the batter over the pineapple, smoothing the top evenly. bake on the center rack of the oven until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes. using a knife or spatula, loosen the sides of the cake from the pan, then invert onto a plate to finish cooling. top with shredded coconut

sweet and sour tempeh- or tofu

1 block of tempeh or tofu
2 cloves of garlic, minced
3 tbsp oil
3/4 cup pureed pineapple
2 tbsp water
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cider vinegar
1/4 cup sugar

mix the pineapple, sugar, and liquid ingredients in a small bowl; mix well to dissolve the sugar. brown the tempeh or tofu in a skillet with the oil, then add the garlic and cook until soft. add the liquid ingredients and simmer for five minutes.

i also made shortcakes, biscuits (plain and with onions, herbs and goat cheese)(more about these later!), grilled tofu and a big pot of rice for dinner, and an onion sauce that didn’t work out.  i spent literally all day in the kitchen- so fun!

2 thoughts on “i get paid for this!

    • the mango sauce was amazing- i grilled some tofu in my cast iron, then served with rice and greens for an easy, impressive dinner. i definitely recommend it- and encourage you to experiment with different types of spices inside too. i think the jalepeno was great, but would also be good with smoky chipotle, lots of cumin and coriander, maybe even sweet with cinnamon and allspice.

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