If you’re looking to improve your regular salad routine, I have you covered. Sometimes, it’s fun to spice things up with an exotic ingredient, but this dressing takes it to a whole new level with two unusual components: tahini and miso. While you can use each of them individually to add a little bit of kick and flavor (and believe me, I have), this is the first time I’ve tried experimenting with tahini and miso together. And it really worked!
Tahini is a staple of Middle Eastern cooking – it’s a paste made largely of sesame seeds and has the texture of somewhat thin natural peanut butter. It’s salty and has a decadent, rich mouth feel while giving food a bit of unusual flavor. You can find it either with the peanut butter or in the international food aisle at most grocery stores.
Miso is… well, I could write a sonnet to miso. As fermented soy paste bursting with umami, miso takes everything and turns it up a notch. It’s used extensively in Japanese cooking and can be found in the international aisle.
This salad dressing combines the two, with just a little bit of water to manage the consistency – all of which comes together perfectly in the Magic Bullet.
East Meets Further East Dressing (Tahini-Miso)
- 2 Tbsp tahini
- 2 tsp. miso, any kind (I use Awase, which halfway between mild and funky)
- juice of ¼ lemon
- 2 Tbsp water, or more to taste
- Add all ingredients to Magic Bullet. Blend, adding water as necessary.
Saturdays and Sundays are usually the two worst days to visit any grocery store. For me, the exception is Zabar’s, an ancient specialty food store on the Upper West Side of New York City. Weekends at Zabar’s are ruled by fancy and exotic samples given out across the store, and the one I look forward to most every week is a platter of smoked mussels and horseradish sauce on a cracker. But why should I have all the fun? Here, you’ll learn to make a delicious horseradish sauce (don’t worry, I was cautious at first, too) that will delight at every occasion – from a house party to a night in relaxing on the couch.
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup grated horseradish
- 1/4 Tbsp dijon mustard
- 1/2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
- First thing up is grating your horseradish. If you’re like me, you’ve never paid attention to horseradish before and are not sure how to do this. Fear not! Just peel and grate it like you’d peel a carrot.
- Combine grated horseradish with all other ingredients in the Magic Bullet and blend.
As mentioned above, I love this with steamed mussels and crackers, but you can substitute other fish or meat if mussels sound a little too adventurous.
These spinach crêpes make a delightfully quick and healthy lunch. First, the Magic Bullet whips up a batch of delicious crêpe batter, and then they are cooked and filled with blended spinach and feta cheese and sprinkled with pine nuts. When filling the crêpes, I like to fry them in a little bit of butter until they are warmed, and then top them with crumbled feta cheese and pine nuts.
Spinach and Feta Crepes
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 Tbsp butter, melted
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- Pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 cups cooked spinach
- 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/2 cup feta cheese, plus more for topping
- 1/3 cup pine nuts
- Add milk, eggs, water, butter, flour and salt to a large Magic Bullet cup or pitcher and blend well.
- Grease a skillet with butter and heat over medium heat. Once hot, pour 1/4 cup batter into the skillet and rotate around several times until the batter no longer moves around the skillet. Cook for about 3 minutes (the sides should start peeling easily off of the skillet when ready), then flip over and cook the other side for about 3 minutes.
- Blend the cooked spinach, nutmeg and feta cheese in a small Magic Bullet cup.
- Add the cooked crêpes one at a time back to the greased skillet over medium heat and spread 1/4 cup of spinach on top.
- Sprinkle with pine nuts and fold in half, then in half again.
- Top with crumbled feta cheese and pine nuts.
Makes 6 crêpes
News flash: Mexican food is trending right now. Tell your friends. But before you do that, try these tacos. I spent some time in Mexico this winter and gorged myself on cochinita pibil, which is an all-night roast pork extravaganza that you eat for breakfast. That was great, and maybe someday I’ll make this with roast pork, but a similar concept works great for a healthy, very easy weeknight meal with chicken thighs. This recipe relies on achiote, which is a little bit of an exotic spice that I found in the Mexican grocery near me. But you can use any chile powder (or just “chile powder.”)
Here’s the plan: the night before, use your Magic Bullet to make a delicious, chile-infused marinade with citrus. Ten minutes, tops. Leave the chicken to marinate overnight. In the morning, slice half an onion and throw it with the chicken into the slow cooker. When you come home from work, your house will smell amazing and the chicken will be falling apart and tender and will have turned itself into a delicious sauce.
Pollo Pibil Tacos
- 1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs (or breasts)
- juice of 1 orange
- juice of 2 limes
- 1.5 Tbsp achiote powder or other chile powder
- 2 tsp. salt
- 2 cloves garlic
- ½ medium onion, thinly sliced
- The night before, blend all the ingredients except the chicken and onion in the Magic Bullet.
- Put chicken and blend into a bowl and refrigerate overnight.
- In the morning, add the chicken and onion to a slow cooker. Cook on low for at least six hours and up to ten.
- Serve with tacos and cabbage, if you like.
Pasta with pesto sauce is a classic Italian dish that everyone can enjoy. Basil, garlic, cheese, oil… What’s not to like? Here, I’ve tweaked the recipe a bit by using pistachios instead of traditional pine nuts. Pistachios add a subtle and very nice nutty flavor to the dish, not to mention that they’re far less expensive than pine nuts. Another plus? They’re green! Perfect for any pesto recipe.
Pistachio Pesto Sauce
- 1 garlic clove
- Basil leaves (1 or 2 handfuls: more or less depending on preference)
- 1 Tbsp pistachios
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- A few pinches of parmesan or pecorino cheese
- Pinch of salt
- Combine all ingredients in your Magic Bullet and blend until creamy.
- Boil your favorite pasta and pour the pesto sauce generously over top until it’s thoroughly green and delicious!
Have you ever thought about adding nuts to your smoothies? I tried it for the first time in this raspberry nut smoothie recipe and loved it. Nuts are a healthy source of protein and fats, and give you a nice energy boost from the extra calories. Before adding them, I was worried how they would affect the texture of the smoothie, but they blended in so smoothly that I didn’t even notice a difference!
In this recipe, I use almonds and walnuts, but you can experiment with other types of nuts. If you don’t have coconut water, plain water also works just fine.
Raspberry Nut Smoothie
- ½ cup frozen organic raspberries
- 1 banana
- ¼ cup walnuts
- ¼ cup almonds
- ½ cup plain yogurt
- ¼ cup orange juice
- ¼ cup coconut water
- Add all ingredients to a Magic Bullet cup and blend well.
Makes 1 smoothie
This potato and leek soup is a fresh, easy soup to throw together, even on the busiest of busy weeknights. Chopped onion and leek are sautéed in butter, then cubed potatoes and vegetable broth are added to the pot and cooked for about 20 minutes until the potatoes are nice and soft. Then, just use the Magic Bullet to purée the soup into creamy deliciousness.
I like to use crumbled bacon and fresh chopped chives for garnish, because I love the addition of these flavors to the soup. What other toppings would you like to try?
Potato and Leek Soup
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 3 leeks, thinly sliced
- 1 russet potato, peeled and cubed
- 3 cups vegetable stock
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 cup freshly chopped chives, for garnish
- 1/4 cup crumbled cooked bacon, for garnish
- Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat and add the onion and leek. Cook over low heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Add the potatoes and stock and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 20 minutes, until potatoes are soft.
- Allow the soup to cool, then transfer to a Magic Bullet pitcher and blend in batches until smooth.
- Transfer back to the pot and reheat. Stir in the salt and pepper.
- Garnish with crumbled bacon and chives when serving.
Makes 4 servings
I recently discovered that the Magic Bullet makes a great spice grinder, presenting me with endless possibilities to add a new depth of flavor to my cooking. But when it comes down to it, if I’m going to be grinding spices, I almost always want one of those spices to be Sichuan peppercorns.
This is a recipe for a spicy, sesame vinaigrette with the distinctive floral mouth-tingle of the peppercorns – in other words, it really packs a flavor punch. Adapted from Serious Eats, you could use the sauce on anything; I’m most used to eating it on noodles, but here it’s used more healthily as a dressing for asparagus and tofu. Serve over rice, and you’ve got a delicious and healthy meal.
Sichuan-Style Sauce with Asparagus and Tofu
- 1 lb asparagus, trimmed
- 1 package extra or super firm tofu, cut into cubes or matchsticks
- 4 scallions, sliced
- 6 dried red peppers
- 2 tsp. Sichuan peppercorns (available online or at Chinese grocers)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3 Tbsp Chinese black vinegar (available at Chinese grocers, or use a mix of rice and balsamic vinegars)
- 2 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
- Microwave chilies and Sichuan peppercorns for fifteen seconds, then blend in the Magic Bullet.
- Heat vegetable oil in skillet on medium heat until shimmer. Add vegetable oil to chili and peppercorns. Let cool for five minutes, then add sesame oil.
- Blend garlic in Magic Bullet. Add sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, and garlic and blend. Add chili oil mixture and blend.
- Boil asparagus until tender, then mix all ingredients together and serve over rice.
Who doesn’t love a good hazelnut spread? It’s a delicious and decadent treat that’s almost universally approved of. Have you met anyone who doesn’t love Nutella? Seriously? Stop being friends with them. Or make them this instead! This recipe highlights a fun and easy way to make your own spread, so you know exactly what you’re eating. Enjoy it for dessert or as an early morning treat. Or any time, really. It’s that good.
Hazelnut Cocoa Spread
- 1 cup roasted hazelnuts
- 1/4 cup sugar (powdered sugar is preferred, but we can powder it ourselves using the Magic Bullet)
- 1/6 cup cocoa powder
- 4 Tbsp oil (olive or vegetable)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- If you don’t have powdered sugar, don’t worry – use the Magic Bullet to powder your own! Add your sugar to the Magic Bullet cup, attach the sifting blade and blend briefly to powder.
- Add hazelnuts to Magic Bullet and blend until mostly creamy – I’d recommend doing this in two batches to make the process easier.
- Add all ingredients to Magic Bullet and blend until creamy. Add in ingredients slowly to allow for an easier blend. Use additional oil, if needed.
Recommended with sweet raisin bread!
Preparing your own fresh batch of homemade ketchup is so much easier than you’d think! All you need is a few fresh tomatoes and the rest of the ingredients are most likely already in your pantry. Seriously.
The first part of the process takes some time since the vinegar has to boil down to almost nothing, leaving only the flavor. But, once the boiling is over, all you need to do is transfer the remaining ingredients to a Magic Bullet cup and blend them together to create your very own homemade ketchup!
By making your own ketchup at home, you can choose the best tomatoes and control the salt and sugar content. There are no preservatives added to this recipe, so be sure to store your ketchup in the refrigerator and use it up within a few days.
- 1 lb ripe tomatoes, chopped
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp. celery salt
- 1/8 tsp. allspice
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- Heat olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat and add the onions. Cook until soft, about 7 minutes.
- Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
- Allow to cool, then transfer the mixture to a Magic Bullet cup and blend until smooth.
Makes 1 cup