Hydro Veggies

Hydroponic Produce from Philippines


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Cream Cheese Stuffed Bell Peppers

cream cheese stuffed bell peppers

Ingredients

3 regular bell peppers or 12 baby bell peppers

2 teaspoons olive oil

3 slices of bacon, diced

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 onion, minced

2 stalks scallions, finely chopped

2 tablespoons freshly chopped coriander

4oz (112 g) cream cheese

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup walnuts, chopped (if desired)

Ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon lemon juice

Serves: 4

 

Directions

Bell Peppers

Wash your veggies. Cut lengthwise and remove the seeds. Lightly brush the bell peppers with olive oil. Grill your peppers in a skillet about 4 to 5 minutes each side. Set aside and let cool.

Stuffing

Chop the bacon and cook in a skillet until crispy, remove and place over a dish with paper towels to absorb the excess oil. In the same skillet, sauté the garlic and onion until the latter becomes translucent.

Chop the scallions and the coriander; reserve.  In a small bowl combine the cream cheese, salt, walnuts, pepper, lemon juice, and lemon zest, mix well. Fold in the scallions and coriander.

Putting all together

With a small spoon stuff the peppers and place them back in the skillet on low heat to warm (about 3 minutes) or place them in a baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes at 300°F. Transfer to a plate and serve.

Variation: Omit the walnuts; use 1/2 cup (50 g, almost 2oz) shredded Cheddar or Monterrey Jack cheese.

Source: Adapted from The Roasted Root and Eat, Drink and Be Merry.


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Tzatziki

tzatziki

This traditional Greek appetizer though is simple to make, it has great flavour. It is light and fresh, and it may also be used as a sauce for gyros or kebabs.

 

Ingredients

1 medium cucumber

Salt, to taste

2 cups Greek or natural yogurt

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp olive oil

handful of dill

1 tsp dried mint

juice of ½ lemon

Serves: 2 cups

 

Directions

Peel cucumber. Cut in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Grate cucumber, place it in a sieve and sprinkle with salt. Let it rest for 5 minutes. With clean hands squeeze out excess liquid. Place in a small bowl. Add the yogurt, minced garlic, olive oil, chopped dill, mint and lemon juice. Stir until fully combined. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Source: Adapted from CBC In the Kitchen.


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Hot Pepper Poppers or Chili Cheese Bites

hot pepper poppers

Have you ever had a craving for something spicy? Well, this could be your fix! Just make sure you have something to drink at hand!

These make great appetizers. We have included two versions. Which do you prefer?

Ingredients

12 fresh hot peppers

1 cup shredded cheddar

1 cup shredded Monterey Jack

1/4 tsp ground garlic

1/4 tsp chili powder

3/4 tsp salt

Zest of 1/2 lime

3/4 cup bread crumbs

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

2 eggs, lightly beaten

Serving: 2 dozen

Directions

Filling: Half the hot peppers lengthwise, remove stems and seeds. In a small bowl combine the 2 cups of cheese; sprinkle the chili powder, ground garlic and salt. Squeeze the lime and toss everything together. Scoop a heaping teaspoon on each pepper half and firmly press.

Coating: In a separate bowl whisk the eggs. In a medium bowl mix the breadcrumbs and flour. Take each half pepper, dip in egg, transfer to breadcrumb mixture and coat evenly; place in a lined baking sheet. Repeat for all. Here you have two options: 1) Heat a skillet with olive oil and fry them in small batches until golden; drain on paper towels. 2) A healthier one we think would be to bake them for about 20 minutes or until golden.

Source: Adapted from The Chubby Vegetarian.

chili cheese bites

Variation: Chili Cheese Bites or Nuggets

Grate the cheese and leave it out of the fridge for a few hours until it reaches room temperature; this will make it soft enough to work with. Finely dice the hot peppers and mix with the cheese and other filling ingredients. Shape into bite size balls. Follow the instructions above for the coating and cooking.


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Cucumber Avocado Tea Sandwiches

cucumber sandwiches

What is your first impression when you see tea sandwiches or finger sandwiches at a party? Perhaps that they are boring or bland, particularly if they are made of cucumber? Well, they don’t have to be! An acquaintance of ours recently had an event and was in need of a vegetarian option for finger sandwiches and wanted something different. We shared this recipe for her to try and it was a hit!

Ingredients

2 ripe avocados

1 cucumber

juice of 1 lemon

salt and pepper to taste

8 big slices of white bread

Serves: 16

Directions

Take the slices of bread and remove the crusts (you don’t have to throw them away, you could use them for bread pudding); cut into 4 pieces. Set aside. Peel off the skin of the cucumber and dice it. Place in a small bowl, pour half of the lemon juice and add about a 1/4 tsp salt and stir. Set aside. Remove the pit of the avocados, scoop into a small bowl, sprinkle salt and pepper to taste, mash with a fork. Pour the other half of the lemon juice into the mixture and stir well.

To assemble: with a butter knife, spread the avocado mixture on each piece of bread; scoop the cucumber onto half of the slices of bread and close with the remaining half. Serve. Try not to leave them sitting for more than 1.5hr.

Source: Adapted from The PPK.


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Scallion Pancakes

Scallion pancakes

These pancakes may work well as appetizers or side dishes. On many occasions, when there is a dough involved, it may take a while to prepare due to the “inactive” time it requires to grow or rest. So this recipe needs preparation in advance, though  it is worth to try! You may serve the wedges with ginger dipping sauce or even the Filipino Garlic Soy Vinegar Dip we used here.

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup hot water

1/2 cup sliced scallions

1 tbsp sesame oil

3 tsp vegetable oil plus 1 more to use separately

Salt and pepper to taste

Serves: 4

Directions

In a medium bowl sift the flour. Carefully pour the hot water and mix with a wooden spoon until a ball is formed. Knead for 2 minutes and place back in a bowl, covered with a tea towel. Leave to rest for 30 minutes. Make sure that the place is warm and there is no draft. Meanwhile, mix the sesame and vegetable oil in a small bowl and set aside. Wash the scallions and  thinly slice.

On a floured surface, knead the dough and with a rolling pin extend into a thin rectangle with the long side facing you. Brush the dough with the oil mixture, sprinkle the scallion, salt and pepper. With your fingers carefully roll up the dough. Cut into 4 pieces. Take one of them, coil it to form like a snail. With the rolling pin flatten into a circle about 0.5cm thick (1/4 inch aprox). Repeat with the other 3 pieces.

Heat a pan and drizzle the remaining tablespoon of vegetable oil, place the pancakes and cook until golden brown on each side. Transfer to a board, cut into wedges and serve into plates with dipping sauce.

Source: Adapted from Serious Eats.


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Broccoli Cheese Bites

Broccoli bites

These are little tasty bundles of  melted cheese and broccoli, that serve well as appetizers or side dishes. A perfect hit with children and adults!

This recipe requires breadcrumb mix, if you would like to make it, you may find a recipe here; or you may buy a package.

Ingredients

2 cups broccoli florets

1 cup mozzarella or cheddar cheese, grated

3 eggs

1 & 1/4 cup breadcrumb mix

Serves: 6-8

Directions

Cut the broccoli florets in half and blanch them. Set aside. In a medium bowl whisk the eggs, add the cup of breadcrumb mix, cheese and broccoli. Toss everything together. Refrigerate the mixture for about 1 hour.

With clean hands form small balls (about 3cm) or patties (disc shape). Place on baking sheet in parchment paper and bake at 300° C for 30minutes. If you shaped them into patties, turn them over after 15minutes.

Source: Adapted from Stacey Snacks.


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Pico de Gallo

Pico de Gallo

Today we are preparing an incredibly easy Latin American recipe. Pico de Gallo is great and super fresh that may serve well as an appetizer or accompaniment to your meals. Using the coriander and lime juice gives it a very special taste. We decided to use bell peppers too, though we have tasted it before without the bell pepper and apparently, in Mexico they use hot peppers instead. It depends on your preferences.

We have added a few pictures as serving suggestions: appetizer with toasted corn tortillas; quesadillas with fried beans and guacamole; and nachos.

Ingredients

4 big plump tomatoes

1/2 medium onion

1/2 red bell pepper

small bunch of coriander

1 lime

salt to taste

Serves: 8

Directions

Dice the tomatoes and onion and place in a bowl. Remove the roots of the coriander and chop (you may eat stems and leaves). Add the lime juice and salt to taste. Mix well. It may be served immediately or if you wish, you could let it chill it in the fridge.

boquita      quesadilla     nachos