Cucumber, Corn and Tomato Salsa

My co-worker gave me some cucumbers she and her husband had grown in their garden. I wanted to use them right away as they were so fresh. This is a variation on a classic cucumber and tomato salad. I added charred corn for sweetness and smokiness. I also added poblano and jalapeno for spice. 

2 small or 1 medium cucumber, diced
2 ears corn
3 vine tomatoes, diced
1 poblano, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbls apple cider vinegar
2 tbls olive oil
2 tsps dry dill
1 tsp garam masala
2 tsps salt

I wasn't about to turn on the broiler to cook the corn. It's been in the 90's here. Instead, I used the same technique often used to char bell pepper. Put the shucked ears directly over a gas flame on the stovetop. If you don't have a gas stovetop you can broil them or use an outdoor grill. 

The corn will pop and make a bit of a mess on your cooktop, but it's worth it. 

Char the corn evenly all around. Allow to cool and them cut the kernels off the cob. 

Stir together all i…

Green Pepper Tofu Puree Vegan Recipe

Longing for something a little different I decided to try using a green bell pepper in a tofu puree.

I've already espoused the merits of using tofu when composing vegan purees. It's just such a natural substitute for dairy in this case. It creates a smooth and creamy texture. It's also a great source of complete vegan protein. 

Puree Ingredients
1 large green bell pepper
1 jalapeno
1 serrano
1 green habanero
1 garlic clove
2 tbls olive oil
1/2 package silken firm tofu
2 1/2 tsps salt
2 tsps celery seed
2 tsps oregano
1 tsp cayenne powder

I didn't want to turn on the oven for a single bell pepper, so I used the microwave. You can microwave a potato, so why not a pepper?

I cooked it that way for 5 minutes and it smelled like cooked green pepper, but it was still pretty firm. It was probably cooking from the inside out; internally steaming itself. So I forged ahead and set it aside. .

I also microwaved all the smaller chile peppers and garlic clove together in a bowl for a minute.

In an effort to make them taste as if they had not been microwaved, I used one of the burners on my gas stovetop to char the everything.

Put each pepper directly over the flame and use tongs to turn to char evenly. Char the garlic a little bit too. If you don't have a gas stove you could use your broiler or a chef's blow torch.

Cut each little pepper open. Remove the seeds and cut into a few small chunks. Cut garlic clove in half.

Add 1/2 tbl oil to a frying pan and cook the pepper pieces and garlic for a minute or two on each side. Then add to your food processor.

Cut into bell pepper carefully. Drain the liquid inside into the food processor. That's flavor we don't want to waste.

Deseed and cut into chunks. Fry off for 2-3 minutes per side in the same pan. Add to food processor.

Add remaining ingredients and puree until smooth.

Chill in fridge for at least 4 hours.