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Flatlander Chili

Reviewed: Jul. 23, 2010
This turned out great. I didn't alter much in the recipe. Whole Foods didn't have specifically "tomato sauce" and "tomato juice" so I used puree and strained tomatoes respectively, but with the same effect I think. I also added a little fresh tomato. About the only other thing I did was cut back slightly on the chili powder and added a fresh jalapeno. Came out great. Maybe I'd reduce the ground beef and add more beans, but I'm fairly accustomed to vegetarian chili by now which is what I usually make, but I really wanted meat this time, and this was a good one. Simple too.
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Veggie Vegetarian Chili

Reviewed: May 16, 2010
I didn't follow this exactly but it was a good starting point. I cut back on the chili powder a little and added a couple jalapenos, and added a bottle of Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout and a bit of salt. After putting in the basil, oregano and cumin it seemed to be a little bitter (mostly because of the cumin I think) so I added a little brown sugar to sweeten it up. Tossed in a couple bay leaves and let it simmer a while. The result was very spicy but quite good. I used this recipe to experiment with instead of some other fine looking recipes on this site mostly because I didn't want to use "fake meat" I don't think a bean based dish needs that if done right. A good recipe that seems practical to add your own twist to.
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Garlic Pepper Seitan

Reviewed: May 16, 2010
This is my first endeavor into seitan also, I have had it before and enjoyed it (in wraps, etc) so I thought I'd give it a try. I basically did as called for but I don't know "chicken style" seitan, Whole Foods just had "cube" and "strips" I used strips. There wasn't a lot of liquid in the package so I added a splash of water before letting it all simmer. I also got two 8oz packages of seitan but it seemed like enough with just one. I made rice with a little lemon zest to serve it over. I cooked it for the recommended time to let the seitan absorb the flavors, which it did, but the bell pepper ended up far too cooked for my tastes (expected with that much time I guess). I thought the end result was still bland so I made a quick spice up at the end with Indian curry spices. This helped round it all out. I'm a carnivore but my partner is a pescetarian who does chicken now and then. We both enjoyed the end result and she finished it all up (no leftovers!), but I reached for the spice rack and I think this definitely needs a little something else.
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Grilled Salmon I

Reviewed: May 7, 2010
I used high end olive oil instead of the vegetable oil and replaced the lemon pepper with a little black pepper and fresh squeezed lemon juice and swapped out the garlic powder for some real garlic. And used a bit less soy sauce than called for. And I broiled it instead of grilled. Which changed just about everything ... but I was *inspired* by this recipe and it came out awesome.
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Tomato Barley Soup

Reviewed: Apr. 21, 2010
We enjoyed this soup. I followed the recipe pretty much as it is. I used roma tomatoes so I upped the quantity to three, and since they were store bought I added just a little pinch of sugar (xylitol actually) to make up for the lack of natural sweetness.
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Zucchini Mediterranean Style

Reviewed: Mar. 11, 2010
This was alright and certainly was healthy but it was a little bland for my taste. The only real substitution I made was using fresh tomatoes instead of canned (which I do for most recipes). If I made this again I would definitely try to work with adding some different spices to give it a little more flavor. It just needs a little bit of help.
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Brown Rice and Black Bean Casserole

Reviewed: Mar. 11, 2010
We liked this. It turns out a little bit like a chicken enchilada (not surprisingly) I used less chicken and more rice and zucchini than called for. I also substituted cheddar for the swiss and used fresh chile instead of the canned. While I did get carrots, DP was snacking on them while I was cooking so I nearly forgot. I shredded a few on top which added some color but not much flavor, and I don't think the recipe needed it especially with the zucchini so I would probably just omit it the next time unless I had carrots on hand I needed to use.
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Vegetarian Moussaka

Reviewed: Feb. 4, 2010
June 18, 2010 Update (I've made this many times now) I'm using the whole can of lentils now, using ample fresh tomatoes still and reducing the lentil juice and tomatoes along the way, otherwise sticking with the general plan. I find I use more or less potatoes, eggplant and zucchini depending on the size of the materials I have to work with. Use your own judgment. I try to get the potatoes and eggplant about equal in terms of surface area and fill around with zucchini. I believe you are supposed to remove the onions before moving forward after browning them then put them back as a layer. The directions don't say this but after a while it seemed like that was what the recipe asks for since it says to layer them later on. I love this, I do slight variations each time but it is consistently awesome. It takes a long time even with a big griddle to brown stuff on, but the result is worth the effort. This is by far my favorite recipe on this site. I traveled to Greece and has moussaka with lamb and beef but I almost prefer it with the lentils. -------------- Feb. 4, 2010: This turned out well. I used fresh tomatoes instead of canned but otherwise followed the recipe without much variation. It was very flavorful and held together well for me. It wasn't terribly pricey and we'll get a few meals out of this.
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Artichoke and Shrimp Linguine

Reviewed: Feb. 2, 2010
We enjoyed this a lot, the sauce was very rich. I used artichokes packed in water (not marinated) the recipe doesn't specify water or oil packed but my partner assumed it was oil marinated because it was so flavorful with the flavor from the garlic and olives and shrimp. I didn't measure the lemon, just used a whole average size lemon and squeezed the juice in with a citrus squeezer. I also got fresh olives from the Whole Foods olive bar instead of getting canned, I had to slice them myself but that probably made the whole thing a lot tastier than if I went for a can. Other than that I pretty much followed the recipe as it was with the slight variation that the package of shrimp I had was 12 ounces instead of 16, there was still plenty of shrimp (in fact I'd say the perfect amount, more might have been overload). Along with a salad this was one of the first meals I made after the birth of our son and it was nice and easy but luxurious enough to make us feel a little special and it was nice to get away from the frozen food we were eating for a few days. It's nice to be back in the kitchen.
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Mediterranean Chicken with Eggplant

Reviewed: Dec. 30, 2009
I liked that this recipe was very simple so it leaves a lot of room to be creative. I went with the lemon and balsamic marinade for the chicken others suggested using white balsamic vinegar. I replaced the tomato paste and water with fresh roma tomatoes skinned, mashed and slow cooked into a sauce, added some garlic along with the chicken and onions, and put a layer of parmesean cheese over the eggplant before I added the sauce and chicken. I'll confess I really don't care for eggplant very often but my partner enjoys it and I enjoyed this dish a lot more myself than I would have expected. I did take a lot of liberties and ended up more with eggplant parmesean with chicken instead of the original theme, but it's a good base recipe you can really run with.
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