Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Common Threads

For the past year I have been volunteering for an organization called Common Threads. Every Monday, I, along with my fellow volunteers and our chef Blanca, work together to cook a meal with a group of amazing elementary students. It has been such a rewarding and fantastic time, especially seeing the kids' skills and tastes expanding each week. Our kids are superstars. They interpret recipes, build sauces, and confidently chop onions and garlic with ease. Our spring session ended last night and though bittersweet, I think the kids had a great experience and will take a lot away from the classes. I'm going to miss seeing them each week.

Here's one of my favorite recipes we made last semester for Brazil week:

Tomate ea Caldeirada de Peixe (Tomato & Fish Stew)
8 oz piece, skinless white fish such as Tilapia, cut in medium dice
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
½ red bell pepper, medium dice
1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped in medium dice
2 large tomatoes, chopped in medium dice
1/4 teaspoon chili flakes
8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 1/2 limes, juiced
3 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste

1. In a medium size bowl, toss together the lime juice and the fish and allow to marinate for about 20 minutes.
2. In a large soup pot, heat up the olive oil until it is shimmering. Add the onions and red bell peppers and sauté for about 8 minutes. Add the sweet potatoes and allow them to cook for another 4 minutes.
3. Add the garlic and chili flakes and toast for just one minute.
4. Add the tomatoes and tomatoes sauce and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken stock and allow the vegetables to become soft in the broth, especially the sweet potatoes.
5. Make sure the sweet potatoes are almost softened and then add the fish, lime juice marinade, parsley and cilantro. The fish won’t need much time to cook, just enough time to warm through. Season to taste.
6. Serve with sauteed kale and brown rice or polenta. Enjoy!


Katie Bishop said...

I can't wait to come back!!! Great pics....hope you're well.


Blanca said...

Great post and pics Myndi.

Channing said...

These are great, Myndi. I love that first one. And what a great organization.