Our fan-created recipe has come to a close and the final results tallied! For those who didn’t see, fans voted on various aspects of a recipe they wanted to see on the site. The winner was a vegetarian appetizer using sweet peppers, with a tie for Indian and Spanish flavors. So given those parameters, I went with a Spanish red pepper tortilla with a curried feta spread. A Spanish tortilla is more like an omelet than the tortillas you may be familiar with.
I hope the create-a -recipe polls gave you a little idea of how to come up with a new recipe. This approach is actually one that I usually use to come up with recipes in my own kitchen. I like to start with what type of dish I am making, whether dinner, dessert, appetizer, etc. Then I will either decide on the main component of the dish or the flavor profile I want to use. Once one is decided, I choose the other and start planning details. I will usually do some research online to see what types of dishes already exist similar to what I want to make. After that I just make something up and hope it turns out delicious!
I hope next time you are not sure what to make, you might try making up your own recipe. If you use flavors you like, it will at least be ok. And who knows, you may find a gem you make over and over again.
As an added small tip, here is how to make little egg-shaped garnishes, like the cheese spread in these pictures. This works with cream cheese, ice cream, custard, or anything with that sort of texture. Just take two teaspoons. Scoop a small amount into one spoon, then scoop it out with the other spoon rotated 180 degrees from the original spoon. Scoop back and forth; supposedly it can be done in three passes, but it usually takes at least 5, sometimes more. Don’t worry if it isn’t perfect; it takes a little practice, but is easy when you get it down.
This recipe makes enough for appetizers for 4, or a light lunch for 2.
1 red bell pepper
2 medium red bliss potatoes, sliced thin
½ onion, sliced thin (optional)
¼ tsp salt
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tbsp chopped cilantro
2 oz feta cheese
3 oz (about ¼ c) whipped cream cheese
½ tsp curry powder
¼ tsp annatto powder (optional)
Avocado and cilantro for garnish
1) Roast the red pepper over an open flame until the skin is blackened, being careful not to burn yourself.
2) Place the pepper in a plastic bag and seal tight. Let sit for 10 minutes to let the pepper steam and cool somewhat. This will make it a lot easier to remove the skin.
3) Peel the skin from the pepper and chop the pepper into 1-inch long strips.
4) Coat the bottom of a small pan with oil, and heat well. An 8-inch, oven-safe, nonstick omelet pan works best, though any small pan will work.
5) Add the potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally until they start to brown.
6) Add the garlic, and if you are using them, onions.
7) Cook until everything is nicely browned but not burnt.
8) While the potatoes and garlic are cooking, beat the eggs, cilantro, 1 Tbsp water, ¼ tsp pepper, a pinch of salt, and the bell pepper strips together.
9) Add the egg mixture to the pan, and mix with the potatoes. Stir everything together and then try to flatten as much as possible.
10) If your pan is oven safe, place in a 350 degree oven for 7-10 minutes until cooked through and mostly firm in the center. If you do not have an oven-safe pan, reduce the heat to low and cook partially covered for about 5 minutes until cooked in the center.
11) While the tortilla is cooking, use a mixer to whip the cheeses, curry and annatto powder together until smooth. Taste the mixture and adjust seasonings as necessary.
12) Flip the tortilla by loosening the edges of the tortilla then placing a plate over the pan upside down and flipping the pan and the plate together.
13) The bottom of the tortilla should be golden brown. Place it back in the pan, bottom side up, and cook for about 30 seconds on medium heat to cook any last uncooked spots.
14) Slice the tortilla into wedges and garnish with avocado, cheese spread and cilantro.
15) Serve and Enjoy!