Last month, Julie and Marina appeared on P.J. Grimes’ radio show “Backstage Gourmet” to talk about their favorite vegetarian and vegan dishes…and October Project, of course! Because we love food as much as we love music (as those of you who have been to a loft concert know!), we wanted to share October Project’s favorite recipes with you. So, turn on “Uncovered” and turn on the oven! After you’re done, we won’t judge if you skip the dishes and listen to “More Uncovered” instead.
October Project’s Backstage Gourmet Recipes
JULIE: This is a great recipe from a great friend and writer, Rob Rosenthal, who also happens to be quite a comedian. He does great videos on the dailymeal.com. I am not a foodie but seem lucky enough to know some. This pea soup recipe is tasty and easy! Two great things!
Pea Soup (Potage de Petits Pois)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 carrot, finely diced
1 stalk celery, finely diced
1 medium onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic, finely diced
2 cups peas (frozen)
4 cups best quality vegetable broth
Salt & Pepper to taste
Optional garnishes: freshly minced tarragon, croutons, or creme fraiche.
In a large sauce pan over low heat, place first five ingredients. “Sweat” the vegetable base until fragrant and onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Avoid caramelizing or browning altogether! Add peas, broth, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and then lower to simmer for about 20 minutes. Turn off heat and blend to desired texture in blender or food processor. Top with optional garnishes if you wish.
MARINA: This is a recipe from the Lodge at Woodloch, a beautiful spa at which Julie teaches and where Julie and I sing to deer in five-star elegance. They grow a lot of their own food there. This quinoa salad is completely addictive, so please know! We are warning you, you will not be able to stop eating it. Chef Adam was nice enough to share the recipe with us (top secret stuff) so we could share it with you.
Quinoa and Seaweed Salad (Serves 2)
*2 cups quinoa, cooked and cooled
1/2 cup wakame (seaweed) thinly julienned
2 tbsp tamari soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tsp white sesame seeds
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp mirin
*You can use any different variety of quinoa available. For this recipe, try using black, red, and golden quinoa. To cook the quinoa, just add to boiling water and cook for about 10 minutes. You will notice that the quinoa will start opening, once all the quinoa is softened and opened just strain and rinse under cold water. As long as the quinoa is softened it will be great, We sometimes under cook it a little and it keeps a nice texture in a salad.
Combine all ingredients and stir, season with salt and pepper. If you can’t find plain wakame, you can also work with prepared wakame salad. You would just mix the prepared salad with the quinoa. Super easy delicious salad – the quinoa soaks up the flavors!
Prepared by chef Adam Mosher at the Tree Restaurant at the Lodge at Woodloch.
EMIL: I didn’t have a recipe, but love this Caesar salad from friend Anne Maxfield who is another foodie with a great food blog called the Accidental Locavore. We didn’t know what that was either, but it’s someone who’s an expert in eating local, and Anne is a pro when it comes to Farmer’s Markets.
Grilled Caesar Salad
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time (on the barbecue): 1 minute
3 anchovies, finely mashed (or anchovy paste would do, too)
OR Vegan Anchovie Substitution: 1 tbsp reduced espresso OR capers OR soy sauce
1 large garlic clove, peeled and run through a press
1 jumbo egg yolk
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/3 cup olive oil (use a good quality oil)
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 head romaine lettuce, quartered the long way and gently washed
1/3 up grated Parmesan cheese
Light the grill.
Mash the garlic and anchovies together to make a paste. I use a 2-cup measuring cup for this but a small bowl would work fine. Add the egg yolk and mustard and whisk well. Still whisking, slowly add the olive oil in a thin stream. The dressing should start to emulsify. Continue whisking and adding the olive oil until it has reached a fairly thick consistency (it should be like a thin mayonnaise). Beat in the lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce, taste and add salt and pepper and more oil if necessary.
With a pastry brush, brush the romaine quarters with the dressing on all sides, making sure to get it between the leaves. Lightly grill the lettuce on all sides, about 15 seconds on the back (leaf side) and 20-25 seconds on each side, until it starts to brown. Brush with the remaining dressing, sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese, cover and grill for about 30 seconds until the cheese has started to melt (you want to cook the leafy side (the back) a little less than the sides, so that when you put the cheese on to melt you’re not burning it). Serve and enjoy!
Vegan Dressing Alternative: From Ann Maxfield herself
“Crazily enough, I reduced a shot of espresso and used about a teaspoon of the reduced espresso. That worked pretty well. Capers could work too, maybe even a little soy sauce.”
From Anne Maxfield, the Accidental Locavore.
Which recipe are you most excited to try? Let us know on our FaceBook page!
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J.W. Harvey on Twitter: twitter.com/xjwharvey
Contact J.W. Harvey: James@OctoberProjectMusic.com