Upachaya Recipes

I love to cook for others, and I’m constantly finding new recipes and old ones to share with my guests.  Often times guests ask me for a copy of those recipes, so I thought why not have a monthly post of recipes served at Upachaya.  We cater to a variety of dietary needs, such as: Raw Foods; Vegan; Vegetarian; Gluten-Free; Grain-Free; Nightshade-Free; and a combination of all sorts of requests.  So, every month I will begin to share many of these recipes, and canning recipes that I’ve perfected, and used over the years as well.

For our first month, I’m going to share three fun and easy recipes.  Watermelon pickles will be the first.  Have you ever heard of Watermelon Pickles?  I use to make these quite often during the summers when I lived back in Wisconsin, many years ago.  Why not?  These pickles are delectable and they use the very last bits of the watermelon.  Nothing going to waste here.

Watermelon Pickles
1/4 cup canning salt
4 cups water
4 cups (1-inch) cubes watermelon rind
4 cups water
3/4 cinnamon sticks
1/4 teaspoon whole cloves
1/4 teaspoon whole allspice
1/2 cup white vinegar (5% acidity)
3/4 cup sugar3 maraschino cherries halved (optional)

Stir canning salt into 1 gallon water in a large container until dissolved; add watermelon rind.  Cover the container with plastic wrap or lid and let sit 12 hours.  Drain and rinse completely.

Combine drained watermelon rind and 1 gallon water in a stock pot.  Bring the water to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until the rind is tender, about 45 minutes.  Drain and set aside.

Put cinnamon sticks, allspice, and cloves in a cheesecloth or spice bag.  Combine vinegar, sugar, spice bag, maraschino cherries, in the stock pot; stir until sugar is dissolved.  Add watermelon rind and bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until rind is transparent, about 5 – 10 minutes.  Remove spice bag and set aside.

You can now can the pickles using sterilized jars and lids.  Put one whole clove into each jar, and break the cinnamon sticks into pieces placing one piece in each jar.  Pack the watermelon rind with the vinegar mixture into the hot sterilized jars, filling within 1/4 inch of the top.  Seal and store.

Or, allow pickles to cool, place in glass jar, and keep in refrigerator to be used within 2 weeks time.

Now for a really fun and very easy snack, let’s make Snack Balls.

No Bake Oatmeal, Peanut Butter, Chocolate Chip Balls
1 cup rolled oats                   1/2 cup natural peanut butter
1/2 cup ground flax seed    1/3 cup honey (or for a vegan version use agave nectar)
1 teaspoon vanilla                1/2 cup chocolate chips, or raisins
pinch of salt

Combine all ingredients together in a large bowl and mix well.  Place in the fridge for about 10 minutes.  Pinch off a little of the batter at a time and roll into a ball.  Place on a large baking sheet, and store in fridge up to 1 week.  This recipe makes approximately 20 balls, and I will almost guarantee you they won’t last a week!

These energy balls are delicious as a snack, dessert, and even breakfast.  Feel free to add in some chopped nuts, or coconut.

This last recipe has been a favorite of mine for quite some time.  I originally found this recipe on http://www.recipezaar.com

Oatmeal Scones
1 3/4 cups flour (can use whole wheat for healthier version)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sugar or 1/4 cup honey
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into bits
1 1/3 cups old fashioned oats (not the quick cooking oats)
1/2 cup dried currants, raisins, or dried cranberries
1/2 cup soy milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Combine first 5 ingredients in a food processor.  Add butter, and process until it resembles coarse meal.  Add oats, currants, and milk and stir mixture until dough just sticks together.  DO NOT OVER MIX.  Transfer to a floured service and knead about 5 times.  Take a tablespoon or more dough and form it into the shape of a scone.  Place on slightly greased baking sheet.  Bake about 20 minutes or until golden.  These freeze very well which is great since I usually make a double batch.  These are excellent for breakfast, or just as a treat during the day.

So there you have it, come back every month for new recipes which we make to feed our guests here at Upachaya.