Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Surprise Scoby Velma - Day 7

Velma is really growing!  I changed out the tea and now she's eating the new batch up.  Notice all the fizz!  I am going to reduce the temperature a bit so that the yeast doesn't outgrow the bacteria.  She's getting bigger and thicker all the time.  There is a lot of brown from the black tea.  For most of yesterday she was submerged.  Then she rose and a nice white film formed.  That part didn't really photograph well, but I can't wait to see what she looks like a in a few days!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Surprise Scoby Velma - Day 3

Little Velma has been growing over the past few days.  Lots of wonderful fizz and she's getting bigger.  The kitchen has been very cold, so I put a heating pad under the jar (on low) for a little while every day to keep it at at least 70.  For the tea I used a heavy black Russian tea that my husband picked up for me somewhere.  I don't care to drink it and since this batch will go all the way to vinegar it seemed like a good use.

There is a nice film forming on the top of the tea and it's getting thicker in areas.  Looking forward to what the next few days will bring.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Velma - Day 1

I started my Scoby for kombacha tea from a bottle of raw tea purchased at a grocery store.  Put the lid back on the bottle (fairly loosly) and set aside.  It was behind the coffee maker so I hadn't noticed it and it never ended up in the recycling.  I found it today while cleaning the counter.  It had what looked like a tiny jellyfish covering the bottom.  Since I saw no evidence of mold I've decided to grow this little jellyfish and see if I can end up with another scoby.  I shall name her Velma

While the tea is brewing I put her in an espresso cup with a bit of liquid from my last scoby start.

This is her first picture.

The little specks are sediment from the liquid I added.  

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Chipotle Eggplant with zucchini

This one is kind of spicy, but I love spicy.  Eggplant and zucchini were on sale, so I stocked up - now have to use them before they turn.  You can never really "stock up" on produce.  Only buy enough to eat quickly!

1 medium eggplant  peeled and cut into strips about the size of homecut french fries (1/2 inch across)
1 medium zucchini sliced
1 small can chipotle peppers in sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp lime juice
1/4 cup olive oil for cooking

In a large skillet cook all ingredients, starting with the zucchini because it takes a tad longer.  After it's started to get tender, add the eggplant and cook until the eggplant is translucent.  

Cilantro Lime Salad Dressing

I love citrus and spice.  This dressing was strong, but very very tasty

In a blender or food processor mix the following:

1 jalapeno pepper
1 small (1/4 inch) piece ginger root
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tablespoon ancho pepper
Enough cilantro to fill 1/4 cup when you squish it up
1/4 cup lime juice
4 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 - 3/4 cup olive oil   I did 1/2 cup, but I like things strong.

I store mine in the fridge, but it does get a bit hard between uses.  If we dont' use all at one meal I just let it sit out and warm up a bit for the next time then give it a good shake.  It never lasts more than 2 meals.

makes an excellent dip for grilled or baked chicken.

My Scoby

I'm participating in 100 Happy Days.  today for the photo (day 1) I chose to take a pic of my scoby which I grew from a bottle of raw kombucha.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Eggplant with Cactus & Peppers

I scored some great deals on eggplant and prickly pear cactus at the market.  Love both, but this is the first time I have cooked them together.

1 medium eggplant - sliced into rounds about 2 inches thick
2 cactus paddles with the spines removed (google the instructions, it's not hard to do) & sliced into strips
yellow bell pepper - sliced
1 small onion - diced
salsa - I used a roasted pablano salsa from Target that I love
chili infused olive oil.  I'm sure regular oil would work, but I found some infused stuff at Aldi and like it quite a bit
a bit of cheese, diced peppers & a drop of sour cream for garnish

I used my cast iron skillet for this one

I don't use a lot of the olive oil, just enough to cook the veggies in

fry the cactus, pepper & onion until they are tender and the cactus is less slimy.  (it's always a bit slimy like okra)

set aside

brush the pan with a bit more oil if needed and cook the eggplant on one side until browned and kind of transparent.  Then turn over and do the same to the other side.  It should be pretty tender all the way though at this point.

Warm up the salsa.  I know salsa is usually cold, but I wanted it warm this time
spoon some over the eggplant and top with the cactus/pepper mix
sprinkles a bit a cheese and top with diced tomatoes and a drop of sour cream.