spring tofu chili

two problems: first, it went from a near heatwave here in d.c. to 50 degrees, overnight. we were eating cool, summer foods then suddenly needed something to warm us up! second, i bought tofu from costco. that means i bought about five pounds of tofu. as the expiration date drew near i had to find a way to use it all up (apologies to my carnivorous husband, who might be having red meat withdrawals).

this tofu chili was an easy fix for both issues. rich, warm, and perfect for these cool spring nights.

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5 minute side dish: garlic chives

the last few times we’ve been at h mart i’ve stared at the garlic chives and asked the chef what to do with them. i’d never heard of, or seen them before. he was pretty clueless, too.

doesn’t he have a culinary degree?
from the best school in the country?
and i have to google this?!

turns out they’re this mix between garlic and onions, almost exactly like a ramp. in west virginia, where i’m from, ramps are a huge deal. they’re only available from late, late april until early, early june. west virginia even has a ramp festival every year, celebrating and exploring the the culinary uses of the ramp. these things stink to high heavens. and so do garlic chives. in fact, i had to take them out of the refrigerator and put them in a ziplock bag because the chef thought they were making his cans of sparkling water too smelly to drink. garlic ramps are native to asia: the himalayas and china. the chef loves ramps and he loved this 5 minute side dish i whipped up with the garlic chives. he ate all of his, half of mine and the leftovers. then i made him brush his teeth. ; )

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spanish tapas, anyone?

i’ve always loved finger foods. tiny sandwiches at bridal showers, crab puffs at weddings, doritos on the couch. doritos are finger foods, right?! something about lots of small plates has always spoken to me, and we’ve been enamored with creating grown-up small plate meals lately. korean banchan is a nakano house favorite, but lately we’ve been toying with spanish tapas.

you guys. this meal. it was epic.

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chicken tikka pizza

the other night on skype, our brother-in-law, hong, told us about this amazing chicken tikka masala pizza he had at namaste pizza. we drooled over it for days, but we’re about 2,800 miles from oakland and i’m pretty sure that’s out of the delivery zone. major bummer. luckily i married a chef. and double luckily i work at a teaching kitchen, which sent me home with some homemade pizza dough. this pizza…. perfection!

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garbage noodles

okay that’s a gross title, but that’s pretty much what this recipe is. garbage, because it’s just all the stuff that’s already in my fridge needing to be used (and probably yours too!), so no cooking involved. just putting a bunch of stuff in a bowl and — gasp! — using the microwave. so maybe this isn’t a recipe so much as a, “hey this is a really yummy lunch, you should have it, too.”

the key to this life-alteringly simple lunch is the sauce. it’s all in the sauce! also, is life-alteringly a word?

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