Potluck Parties: Mag Club January

EVENT: Mag Club January

VENUE: Michelle’s Apartment, West Village
PARTY SIZE: 8 in the room, 1 via skype
TYPE: Semi-Virtual Potluck
MENU: Lentil Chili (Cara); Cous Cous Salad (Phoebe); Jor’s Specialty Beans; Salad with Quinoa, Roasted Chickpeas, Pine Nuts, and Parm (Leora); Veggies (Calia); Zucchini Casserole (Sarah); Green Vegetable Quiche (Michelle); Keste Pizza (Julie); Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies (Kate)

It’s been a while since we’ve written about Mag Club. December’s edition was canceled because of holiday party season, and we decided that the celebration at Kate’s parents’ apartment would take the place of our potluck. November’s club we documented in separate posts–I made this soba noodle salad, and Phoebe made these to-die-for sundried tomato paninis. (By the way, you don’t want to know how long it took us to remember what we’d made sooo many months ago.)

So, it was with much glee and a videochat date (Alana, one of our members, moved to Portland, Oregon in the interim), that we came together at Michelle’s. We fought for a minute over who would get to sit in the awesome chair Michelle had designed and built last summer in Copenhagen, but then we settled down to gossip, food, and online magazine articles. As our potlucks seems always to have an unplanned theme, this meeting will go down in history as the Mag Club of the bean. It had to do, in part, with Calia’s contagious enthusiasm for beans, which she’s only made part of her diet since Alana’s lentil salad contribution over the summer. But it was pure coincidence that I brought lentil chili made from the contents of my pantry, while Jordana made the simple bean dish she used to eat most nights when she studied abroad in Florence her sophomore year in college. And though Leora has a reputation for overloading her salads with ingredients, we had no way of predicting that one of those many toppings would be roasted chickpeas.

The icing on the cake, by the way, was Kate’s banana chocolate chip cookies. Even after sevaral slices of pizza, lots of beans, and a heaping helping of Sarah and Michelle’s casserole/quiches respectively, I found room in my stomach for four whole cookies. Oops.

From my kitchen, filled with lentils, white beans, and chickpeas, to yours,



Lentil Chili
Makes about 5 cups

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion
4 cloves garlic, diced
2 jalepenos, cut into slivers (I removed the seeds from one but left the others in)
1 small carrot, diced
4 oz white mushrooms, cut in half and then sliced
4 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup brown lentils
1/2 cup black lentils
1 14-oz can of diced tomatoes
1/4 cup quinoa
1/2 cup bulgur wheat
avocado, cheddar, and/or sour cream for serving

Saute the onions in the olive oil for a minute or two over medium heat. Add the garlic, jalepenos, carrot, and mushrooms, and cook until all the vegetables are soft. Add the spices and the salt, stirring to toast for about a minute. Throw in both kinds of lentils, then pour in water (or vegetable broth) to cover, about 2-3 cups. Bring to a boil.

Lower the heat and let the chili simmer for 20 minutes. Pour in the tomatoes, the quinoa, and another cup or so of water if necessary bring to a boil, then cover and simmer again for 10-15 minutes. At this point, the lentils should be more or less soft.

Add the bulgur and a little more water if the chili seems dry, cover once more, and cook for about 10 more minutes. Let the chili rest for a few minutes on the stove, then taste it for salt and spice.

Jor’s Specialty Beans
Serves 2

1 can of white cannellini beans
1 can of corn
about 10 – 15 chopped cherry tomatoes
5 – 6 chopped cloves of fresh garlic
a little bit of olive oil

OK, so pretty much, in a sauce pan – put some olive oil – then add the garlic until golden brown
once garlic is golden brown add the beans – make sure to drain the liquid (from both the beans and corn before adding to the pan).

Watch and smile as the beans start to sizzle and then add the corn.

Toss around the garlic, beans, corn in the saucepan until crispy – then add the tomatoes.
That’s pretty much it – you might also want to add some salt, or if you’re feeling very adventurous, you could smash the beans and corn – that tastes yummy too!

Then EAT and enjoy!

Zucchini Casserole
Serves 8-10

4 eggs
1 cup bisquick
1/3 cup olive oil
1 onion, chopped

1 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup fresh dill
1/2 cup fresh parsley
8 ounces white mushrooms (optional)
2 cups sliced zucchini (about 2)
2 cups sliced summer squash (about 2)

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Cut half of the Parm into small chunks. Grate the remaining half. Set both aside.
Beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add the bisquick, the olive oil, and the onion.

Put the mushrooms–if you’re using them–in the food processor with the dill and the parsley. Process until finely diced.

Add the diced dill, parsley, and mushrooms to the mixing bowl with the chunks of parmesan. Stir in the zucchini.

Transfer all to GREASED Pyrex baking dish and top with the grated Parmesan. Bake for one hour, until browned.

Posted in: Potluck Parties
  • Lauren

    Can you post the recipe for the banana chocolate chip cookies? They sound delicious!

  • Kate

    I love the idea of lentils in chili, but, what is pictured next to it? Corn bread? It looks absolutely delicious!

  • Caitlyn

    The lentil chili looks amazing — can't wait to try it out!

  • Jessica

    The lentil chili was awesome, but a little too spicy. I used three jalapenos (recipe calls for 2) and 4t of chili powder. Next time, I will only use about 2 of each. thanks guys!

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