Urban Herbs

Mind Your Pantry!

Urban Herbs is a spices company created by chefs, for chefs. We are here for those looking for a large selection of high quality cooking spices, dried beans, gourmet rices and grains--all your kitchen pantry staples.

SPANISH PARDINA LENTIL & CHORIZO STEW

From: Fine Cooking
Yield: 4-6 Servings

1 Tbsp    Olive oil

1 med    Yellow onion, chopped

1 C    Sliced carrots (about 1/4” thick)

¾ C    Chopped celery

1½ tsp    Fresh garlic, finely chopped

1½ Lb    Yukon gold potatoes, peeled/cut into 1-inch pieces

7 oz    Cured chorizo, cut into half moons

½ tsp    Dried oregano

½ tsp    Smoked paprika

1½ C    Pardina lentils, rinsed

1 can    Can diced tomatoes, with juice (14.5 oz)

½ C    Fresh cilantro, chopped (garnish)

Sea salt & freshly ground pepper

Heat the oil in a 5-qt Dutch oven or other heavy-duty pot over med-hi heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 4 minutes.

Stir in the potato, chorizo, oregano and paprika and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 minute. Add the lentils and 4 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until the lentils are just tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and their juice, and ½ tsp salt and cook for another 5 minutes. Stir in the cilantro, season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

CURRIED LENTIL-SCALLION PANCAKES

From: Fine Cooking
Yields: 4-6 Servings

2    Bunches of scallions (about 16)

¼ C    Canola oil, plus more for cooking

1 Tbsp    Madras curry powder

½ tsp    Cumin, ground

1 C    Unbleached all-purpose flour

2 tsp    Granulated sugar

1½ tsp    Baking powder

¼ tsp    Baking soda

½ C    Yellow lentils, rinsed

1½ C    Plain yogurt

1 Lg    Egg, lightly beaten

1¼ tsp    Fresh lime juice

Fresh ground black pepper (to taste)

Fine sea salt (to taste)

Trim scallions and thinly slice the whites to yield between 1/2 and 1/3 cup. Slice enough greens thinly on the diagonal to yield about 1½ cups. Heat 1½ tsp oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the scallion whites and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add another 1½ tsp oil to the pan, and then the curry powder, cumin and ½ tsp of salt. Cook, stirring, until combined and fragrant, about 15 seconds. Remove from heat. Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and soda, and 1 tsp of salt in a medium bowl. 

In a 2 qt saucepan, bring the lentils and 1½ cups water to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender. Drain through a sieve positioned over a medium sized bowl. Reserve ½ C of the cooking liquid. 
Transfer the lentils to a medium sized bowl and mash with a fork until smooth, adding a little of the reserved cooking liquid if necessary.  Add 1 cup of the yogurt, the egg and ¼ C oil, and stir to combine. Add the dry ingredients, cooked scallion whites and raw greens, stir to combine.
In a small bowl, stir remaining ½ C yogurt with the lime juice and season with a little pepper. Meanwhile, lightly oil a nonstick griddle and heat over medium-low heat.

Working in batches, pour about ⅓ C of the batter onto the griddle, and spread with the back of a spoon until the pancake is about 4” in diameter.  Repeat to make more pancakes, cook, undisturbed, until the top is very bubbly and partially set and edges are browned. Flip with a spatula and continue cooking until the second side is nicely browned. Repeat with remaining batter. Cut pancakes into wedges if large, and serve with the lime yogurt.

Barbecued Beans

From: Taste of Home
Serves: 5

1 Lb        Cooked kidney beans, cooled
1 lb         Cooked great northern beans, cooled
1 can      Pork & Beans (15 oz)
½ C        Barbecue Sauce
2 Tbsp   Brown sugar
2 tsp      Prepared mustard

In an ungreased 8 inch square disposable foil pan, combine all ingredients. Grill, covered, over medium heat 15-20 minutes or until heated through, stirring occasionally.

CARDAMOM ROSEWATER ICED TEA

From: Food & Wine Magazine
Serves: 8

½ C    Green cardamom pods
12       Black tea bags
½ C    Honey
¾ C    Heavy cream
8        Drops rosewater
Ice

In a small skillet, toast the cardamom pods over moderate heat, stirring until very fragrant and deep golden, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a heatproof bowl. Add the tea bags and 8 cups of hot water, let steep for 15 minutes. Strain the tea into a bowl and stir in the honey. Cover and refrigerate until cold.

Pour the tea into 8 ice-filled glasses. Top each serving with 1½ Tbsp of heavy cream and 1 drop of rosewater.

JEWELED MILLET SALAD WITH CRISPY CHICKPEAS

From: Food & Wine Magazine
Serves: 6

½ C         Millet
1 Lb         Cooked chickpeas, rinsed and patted dry
2 Tbsp    Harissa
½ C         Extra virgin olive oil
½ C         Slivered, blanched almonds
1              Medium onion, thinly sliced
1 C          Julienned carrots
¼ C         Thinly sliced scallions
2 tsp       Dried cilantro leaves, chopped
1 tsp        Dried mint leaves, chopped
1 tsp        Dried basil leaves, chopped
2 tsp       Finely grated lemon zest
               plus 3 Tbsp lemon juice
Kosher salt & Pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 400˚F. In a medium saucepan, combine the millet with 1½ cups of water and bring to a boil. Add a generous pinch of salt, cover and simmer over low heat until the millet is tender and the water is absorbed, 20 minutes. Let steam, covered, for 10 minutes, then fluff with a fork.

Meanwhile, on a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the chickpeas with the harissa and 2 Tbsp of the olive oil and season with salt & pepper. Bake for about 25 minutes, until crisp. Let cool slightly.

In a medium skillet, heat the remaining 6 tbsp of olive oil until shimmering. Add the almonds and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until golden. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate and season with salt and pepper. 

Add the onion to the skillet and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until well browned, about 12-15 minutes.

In a bowl, toss the millet, onion, almonds, carrots, scallions, cilantro, mint, basil, lemon zest and juice. Fold in the chickpeas, season with salt and pepper and serve.

CREAMY GRITS WITH BLACK BEANS

From: Cuisine At Home Magazine
Serves: 2

For The Grits
1½ C   Milk
½ C    Southern Plantation Grits
⅓ C    Diced green chiles
½ C    Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Salt to taste

For The Beans
2 tsp    Vegetable oil
1 lb       Cooked Black Beans
½ tsp    ea: Cumin, oregano & garlic powder
¼ tsp    ea: Coriander, cayenne pepper
¼ C       Water
½ C       Fresh or frozen corn kernels
1            Avocado, diced
Lime Wedges, optional garnish

Heat milk in a saucepan until boiling. Reduce heat to med-low and gradually whisk in grits and chiles, stirring to prevent lumps; cook 5 minutes. Stir in cheese; season grits with salt.
Saute garlic in oil in a saute pan over medium heat, about 1 minute. Add beans, cumin, oregano, coriander and cayenne, and cook to heat through, about 2 minutes. Stir in water and reduce until nearly evaporated. Add corn and cook to heat through, 2-3 minutes. Serve grits topped with beans, avocado and a squeeze of lime.

 

WHEAT BERRY SALAD

Serves: 6
From: Taste of Home - Simple & Delicious Magazine

1½ C       Wheat berries
2             Celery ribs, finely chopped
½ C        Dried cherries, chopped
½ C        Chopped walnuts, toasted*
1 Tbsp    Dried Parsley
1             Green onion, chopped
3 Tbsp   Olive oil
2 Tbsp   Lemon juice
¼ tsp    Salt
¼ tsp    Pepper
Mixed salad greens (optional)

Place wheat berries in a saucepan; add water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, about 1 hour or until tender. Drain and transfer to a bowl. Cool completely.
Add the next 5 ingredients to wheat berries. In a small bowl, whisk oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper until blended; add to salad and toss to coat. If desired, serve over mixed greens.


*to toast walnuts: bake in a shallow pan in a 350˚ oven for 5-10 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally.

ROASTED CHICKEN WITH LEMON & HERBS De PROVENCE

From: Urban Herbs - Chef's Pantry

1              Whole Chicken, about 3½ Lbs
1              Lemon, halved
6 Tbsp   Butter, unsalted, softened
1 T           Herbs de Provence
1 C           White wine
Salt & Pepper, to taste
Cotton kitchen twine
Roasting pan with rack

Place oven shelf on lower middle rack. Preheat oven to 425˚F. Meanwhile, warm the white wine and melt 2 Tbsp of the butter into it for basting. Mix together remaining butter, herbs and juice of 1/2 a lemon. Season the bird inside and out with salt and pepper and squeeze the remaining lemon into the cavity. Rub the bird with the softened butter mixture inside and out. Take the wing tips, pull them up and fold them forward and underneath the wing. Tie the ends of the drumsticks with twine then place on roasting rack inside pan breast side up and place in the oven.

After 15 minutes reduce the temperature to 350 degrees. When the chicken is beginning to brown baste with wine and butter mixture. Baste several times using the wine and any accumulated pan juices. Roast until thermometer reads 170˚F or about 1¼ hours to 1½ hours. Remove from the oven. Let the chicken rest for 15 minutes before carving meat. Serve the roast pan juices poured over the carved meat.

CORIANDER ALMOND CRUSTED CHICKEN LEGS

From: Food & Wine Magazine
Serves: 4

½  C              Whole, blanched almonds
2½ Tbsp       Coriander seeds
2 tsp             White peppercorns
2 tsp             Yellow mustard seeds
2 ¼ tsp        Sea salt
1 ¼ tsp         Finely grated lemon zest
4                   Whole chicken legs (2½ lbs)
¼ C              Extra virgin olive oil,  plus more for brushing
Lemon wedges, garnish

Preheat the oven to 400˚F. In a spice grinder, pulse the almonds until finely ground. Transfer to a large bowl. In the spice grinder, grind the coriander, peppercorns and mustard seeds until coarsely ground.  Add tot he large bowl along with the salt and lemon zest; mix well. Brush the chicken with olive oil, the dredge in the almond mixture, pressing to help it adhere.

In a large cast-iron skillet, heat the ¼ C of olive oil over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the chicken, skin side down, and cook until lightly browned, 8-10 minutes. Flip and cook until very lightly browned on the bottom, about 5 minutes. Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast the chicken until your thermometer reads 165˚F in the thickest part of the thigh (15-20 mins). Serve with lemon wedges.

SCONES WITH CINNAMON & CARDAMOM

½ C        Whole milk
1              Egg, large
1 tsp       Vanilla extract
3 Tbsp   Brown sugar, light
2 C         Flour, all-purpose
3 tsp      Baking powder
6 Tbsp   Butter, unsalted, cut into pieces
½ tsp     Sea salt, fine ground
2 tsp      Cardamom, ground
¼ tsp      Mace, ground
2 tsp       Chinese cinnamon, ground
2 tsp        Lemon zest, freshly grated
1 oz          Pine nuts, toasted
Coarse sugar for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 400˚F. In a mixing bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, brown sugar and vanilla until well combined. In a sepearate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cardamom, mace, cinnamon and lemon zest. Cut the butter into the flour using 2 forks. Do not use your hands, as this will melt the butter.  Stir in the milk mixture and half of the pine nuts with a wooden spoon until it begins to form dough. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead gently by folding several times.

Lightly press the scone dough into a 1 inch thick round. Use a fluted or round cutter to cut out the scones. Transfer the scones to an ungreased baking sheet and press the remaining pine nuts gently into the top of eac scone. Brush scones with a littl emilk, sprinkle with the coarse sugar and bake for 10-15 minutes or until risen and golden. Remove from baking sheet and cool slightly to serve. 

GRILLED LEMON PEPPER WINGS

Yield: 24 Wings
From: Urban Herbs - Chef's Pantry

24    Chicken Wings
4 Tbsp    Lemon Pepper Seasoning
2 Tbsp    Olive Oil
Ranch Dressing for dipping (optional)

Rinse and pat dry chicken wings. Coat with olive oil and rub wings thoroughly with Lemon Pepper Seasoning. Light your grill and turn it on high.  Once your grill is hot, carefully clean the grill grate with a wire brush.  Take a side towel or clean rag lightly oiled and rolled.  Using your tongs wipe off the grate with the oiled towel.  This will serve two purposes which are both important.  It will clean the grate of any dirt and dust and lightly oil the grill to prevent your wings from sticking.


Place wings on hot side of grill* and begin cooking your wings, turning on occasion to achieve a golden color. Should the grill start to flare-up, douse the flame with a spoonful of the water until the flames have subsided.  Should the wings start to burn place them in the lower zone of your grill to finish cooking. Once all of your wings are finished, place them in a bowl and serve immediately.

 

*Zone your grill:  Allocate an area of your grill at a lower heat so you have a place to set aside wings which have gotten too much color yet are still raw.  Have the other side on medium to high.  

Mexican Chicken & Rice With Black Beans

Serves: 6
From: Cuisine At Home Magazine

1 Tbsp    Each, Chili powder and ground cumin
1 tsp    Each, Ground coriander and kosher salt
½ tsp    Black pepper, freshly ground
1½ Lb    Chicken thighs, boneless/skinless, cubed
3 Tbsp    Olive oil, divided
½ C    Each, Diced Onion and yellow bell pepper
1 Tbsp    Each, Minced garlic and serrano chile
1½ C    Dry basmati rice
2¾ C    Low sodium chicken broth
1 Lb    Cooked, black beans
¼ C    Minced, fresh cilantro
2 Tbsp    Fresh lime juice
Radishes, roma tomato, serrano, & cilantro leaves for garnish (optional)

Combine chili powder, cumin, coriander, salt and black pepper in a large bowl. Add chicken and toss to coat. Meanwhile, heat 2 Tbsp oil in a 12 inch skillet over medium until shimmering. Add chicken and brown on all sides, 5-6 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate. Heat remaining Tbsp oil in same skillet over medium. Add onion, bell pepper, garlic, and minced serrano; cook 1-2 minutes. Stir in rice and cook 1 minute. Add broth, scraping up any brown bits, and bring to a boil. Return chicken to skillet, cover, reduce heat to low and cook until chicken is cooked through and rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Stir in beans, minced cilantro, and lime juice. Garnish chicken and rice with radishes, tomato, sliced serranos, and cilantro leaves.

Italian Chickpea Soup

Serves 6 (about 11 cups)
From: Cuisine At Home Magazine #115

1 C        Dry ditalini pasta
3 oz      Pancetta, diced
2 Tbsp  Olive oil
1½ C      Onion, diced
½ C        Each, Carrot and celery, diced
2 Tbsp   Tomato paste
1 Tbsp    Each, Minced garlic, rosemary, sage
1 tsp       Anchovy paste
½ tsp     Red pepper flakes
½ C        Dry white wine
3 C         Low-sodium chicken broth
2 Lb       Cooked chickpeas
1 Can      Diced tomatoes in juice (28 oz)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Grated Parmesan

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling, salted water according to package directions; drain, reserving 1 cup pasta water. Meanwhile, cook pancetta in oil in a large pot or saute pan over medium heat until crisp, then transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Reserve 2 Tbsp drippings.

Sweat onions, carrot and celery and drippings in same pot, covered over medium heat until vegetables soften, 5-8 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, garlic, rosemary, sage, anchovy paste, and red pepper flakes; cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Deglaze pot with wine, scraping up any brown bits. Cook until wine nearly evaporates, 3-5 minutes. Add broth, chickpeas, tomatoes, & pasta water. Bring to boil; reduce to medium low and simmer 15 mins. 

Transfer 2 cups* to a food processor or blender; carefully puree and return to pot. Stir pasta into soup; cook until warmed through, 3-5 minutes. Season soup with salt and black pepper; top servings with Parmesan and pancetta.

*This gives thickness and body to your soup. You can avoid this step if you like a thinner soup, or add more if you prefer a thicker soup.

OVERNIGHT STEEL-CUT OATS (Slow Cooker)

Serves: 4-6

2 C     Steel-cut oats
3 C     Water
3 C     Milk
1 tsp   Salt
1/4 C  Ground flaxseed (optional)

Combine all ingredients in a lightly greased slow cooker. Cover and heat on low 6-8 hours (or overnight).

TOPPING/MIX IN IDEAS:
Strawberries, honey, maple syrup, bananas, apples, hemp hearts, peanut butter, coconut, granola, figs, chocolate chips, raisins, cranberries, cinnamon, brown sugar, yogurt, the sky is the limit!

HUMMUS "For Real"

From: Food Network - Alton Brown

1 Lb       Slow Cooker Chickpeas (*Recipe below)
2            Garlic cloves, minced
1½ tsp   Kosher salt
5 Tbsp  Lemon juice, freshly squeezed
¼ C       Water
⅓ C        Tahini, stirred well
¼ C        Extra virgin olive oil,  plus more for serving (optional)

Place the chickpeas, garlic, and kosher salt in the bowl of a food processor. Process for 15 to 20 seconds. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and process for another 15 to 20 seconds. Add the lemon juice and water. Process for 20 seconds. Add the tahini. Process for 20 seconds, then scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the processor running, drizzle in the olive oil.  To serve, transfer the hummus to a bowl and drizzle with additional olive oil. 
*Slow Cooker Chickpeas
Place 7 cups of water, 1 lb dry chickpeas, and 1/4 tsp baking soda in a 2 1/2-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on high heat for 4 hours, or on low heat for 8 to 9 hours, or until tender. Drain and serve immediately, or use in desired dish.

FORBIDDEN RICE FEAST

2 Tbsp    Ghee
1 Lg    Shallot, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp    Ginger, peeled & minced
2 C    Forbidden black rice, rinsed & drained
1 Tbsp    Green cardamom pods, cracked
Sea Salt
Thinly sliced scallions, for garnish

In a medium saucepan, heat the ghee. Add the shallot and ginger and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally until softened and lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in the rice and cardamom and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add 3 cups of water and a generous pinch of sea salt, bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat until the rice is tender and the water is absorbed, about 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and let steam for 15 minutes. Fluff the rice with a fork and season with salt. Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with sliced scallions and serve.

 

QUINOA & BLACK BEAN STUFFED PEPPERS

1 ½ C  Water
1 C       Quinoa, rinsed
4 Lg    Green peppers
16 Oz  Chunky Salsa, divided
1 Lb    Cooked black beans,
½ C    Ricotta cheese
½ C    Monterey Jack cheese, shredded, divided

Preheat oven to 400˚F. In a saucepan, bring water to boil. Add quinoa. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 10-12 minutes. Meanwhile, cut and discard pepper tops; remove seeds. Place in a greased 8” baking dish, cut side down. Microwave, uncovered on high 3-4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Turn peppers cup side up. Save 1/3 cup salsa; add remaining salsa to quinoa. Stir in beans, ricotta cheese and 1/4 cup Monterey Jack cheese. Spoon into peppers; sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake uncovered 10-15 minutes or until filling is heated through. Top with reserved salsa.

CINNAMON SPICED APPLES (Slow Cooker)

⅓ C    Sugar
¼ C    Brown sugar
1 Tbsp    Corn starch
3 tsp    Ground cinnamon
⅛ tsp    Ground nutmeg
6     Large granny smith apples, peeled and cut into eighths
¼ C    Butter, cubed

In a small bowl, mix the first five ingredients.  Place apples in a greased 5 qt slow cooker; add sugar mixture and toss to coat. Top with butter. Cook, covered, on low 3-4 hours or until apples are tender,  stirring once half way.

 

PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE

Yields: 1 Cheesecake

Crust:
8 oz     Gingersnap cookies, broken into pieces
½ C     Pecans, finely chopped
4 T     Unsalted butter, melted
2 T     Sugar
1 t     Cinnamon
Filling:
3 T     Flour, all-purpose
1 T     Pumpkin Pie seasoning
48 oz     Cream cheese, room temp
1.5 C     Sugar
1    (15 oz) Can unsweetened pumpkin
3 T     Bourbon
2 t     Vanilla extract
4     Lg Eggs

Crust:
   Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place gingersnaps in the bowl of a food processor with a steel blade and process until finely ground. Add pecans, butter, sugar and cinnamon. Process until the mixture just comes together.
   Transfer the mixture to a 9-inch spring form pan. Pat into the bottom of the pan evenly and about 1 inch up the sides. Bake in the middle of the oven for 10 minutes. Place on wire rack to cool completely before adding the filling.

Filling:
   In a small bowl whisk together the flour and pumpkin seasoning, set aside. In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and sugar on medium speed until light and airy, about 2-3 minutes. Add the pumpkin puree, vanilla and flour mixture. Combine thoroughly. Add the eggs, one at a time, incorporating each egg thoroughly before adding the next.
   Pour the batter into the prepared piecrust. Wrap the outside of the pan with adouble layer of foil. Place in a roasting pan lined with paper towels. Add enough waterto come half way up the sides of the pan. Bake for about 1 ½ hours or until cheese-cake is set. Remove from water and cool on wire rack. Remove foil and chill for at least4 hours or overnight.
 Open the spring form and place on a serving platter. Serve with cinnamon whipped cream.