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Cornbread Quiche May 7, 2012

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in breakfast, dinner, good for a group, vegetarian.
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Cornbread Quiche

I’ve been meaning to make this recipe  for so long.  I first saw it on the blog Healthy Tipping Point, and then my friend Kim made it and wrote about it on her blog, Girl Evolving.  I wish I wouldn’t have waited–this was amazing and a great way to use up odds and ends left in the fridge. The recipe makes a lot and it was maybe even better as leftovers the next day!

For our quiche, I used what we had on hand, which was a few portobello mushrooms, one bunch of green onions, a few handfuls of spinach, and about a cup of broccoli.  Really, you could use any combination of veggies and cheese here.  For the cheese, we used a new find that I picked up last week at 8 Degrees Plato in Ferndale.  It was a morel and leek jack cheese wheel and oh my god, was it good!! If you are in the area and are a cheese fiend, pick that up pronto!

Cornbread Quiche
(Adapted from here and here)

Ingredients:

3/4 cup cornmeal
3/4 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup milk (dairy or non-dairy, no difference)
1 tsp honey, agave, or sugar
1 tbsp oil
5 eggs
Salt, pepper, and other seasonings as desired
Veggies (you’ll need about 3-4 cups of veggies, in whatever combo you would like)
1 1/2 cups cheese

Method:

Start with the cornbread.  Mix the cornmeal, flour, salt, and baking powder together, and then whisk in the milk, oil, and honey. Pour into a greased casserole dish (2 qt size) and bake at 375 farenheit for 10 minutes.

While that is baking, saute your veggies until they are tender. In a separate bowl, whisk the 5 eggs with some salt and pepper (and other seasonings as desired!).  When the 10 minutes is up, spread the tender veggies on top of the cornbread, and top with the eggs.  Sprinkle cheese on top, and return to the oven for another 30 minutes or so. Let cool slightly before cutting into it!

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Kale-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms April 23, 2012

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, quick meal, vegetarian.
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Kale Stuffed Portobella Mushroom

I bought some big portobello caps at the market on Saturday with the intention of making some sort of Mexican-inspired stuffed mushroom, but when I got home and checked the contents of my fridge, I decided on a different route.

I had a container of cooked brown rice (leftover from making this fried rice the night before) that I thought would go well with kale and a tomato sauce.  So that’s what I did, and it was delicious.  Only I know this, though, because even though I made two stuffed mushrooms, I dropped the one in the picture above on the floor right after taking this picture, and Ryan was nice enough to let me eat the one remaining mushroom and scrounge together something else for himself.  Sorry, Ral!

Kale-Stuffed Portobello Mushroooms

Ingredients:

Two portobello mushroom caps
1 cup cooked brown rice
1/2 bunch of kale, cleaned and chopped
1/4 onion, diced
1/2 cup tomato sauce
salt and pepper
Mozzarella or some Italian blend of cheese for the top

Pre-heat the oven to 375 Farenheit.

Clean your portobello caps.  I scrape the gills out of mine with a spoon.  In a medium-sized pan, saute the onion over medium heat until it is slightly browned.  Add the kale, and continue to cook until the kale is about half the volume it was before.  Add the brown rice, tomato sauce, and season to taste.

Scoop the mixture into the caps, and top with shredded mozzarella or Italian cheese.  Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until the cheese is lightly browned.

Here’s the mushroom pre-cheese:

stuffed mushroom

Kale, Carrot, and Tofu Curried Fried Rice February 7, 2012

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dairy free, dinner, vegetarian.
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I love the Instagram app on my iPhone.  I check it all the time to see and share pictures with friends (my user name is apilchak).  9 times out of 10, the pictures I share are of Emitt, but sometimes I throw a food picture in there, too. This month, I’m doing a “photo a day” challenge where every day you have to post a picture of some pre-determined subject matter.  Last night’s subject was “dinner.”  Easy enough.  This is what I made, and posted, and a few people asked for the recipe, so I thought I’d put it up here!

This comes together really quickly if you have the rice pre-cooked.  I usually cook the rice in the morning while I’m getting ready for work. That way, it’s pre-cooked and cooled (which is what you want when making fried rice) when I get home from work.  Also, what makes this rice SUPER easy is using a bottled sauce, either curry or peanut.  If you have the time and inclination to make your own curry or peanut sauce, it’d probably be even better, but I’m lacking in the time department these days.  I usually use one of these:

curry and peanut sauces

The two curry sauces are from Trader Joe’s and the peanut sauce is my favorite bottled peanut sauce, the San-J brand.  So now that you know my dirty secret (bottled sauce instead of fresh!), here’s how I made the rice.

Kale, Carrot, and Tofu Curried Fried Rice
(Printable Recipe)

curried fried rice

Ingredients:

3 cups cooked and cooked brown rice
15 oz firm tofu
1 bunch kale, cleaned and chopped
3 medium carrots, shredded
A few shakes of soy sauce
2 t. golden mountain sauce (can use soy sauce if you don’t have golden mountain)
1/2 cup curry sauce (I’ve used the red and yellow curry sauces from TJs)
2 eggs
Sesame seeds, sriracha, etc to top

Method:

Dice the firm tofu into small cubes.  Saute the cubes in olive oil in a large pan (I use my largest skillet for this) until golden, about 10 minutes.  When the tofu is nice and crispy, add a few shakes of soy sauce to the pan to lightly coat the tofu.

Add the cleaned and chopped kale and shredded carrots (I grate mine with the box grater) to the pan with the tofu.  Saute them together for 2 minutes or so, then add the rice.  Stir fry everything together for 3-4 minutes, add the curry (or peanut) sauce and golden mountain (or soy) sauce.  Continue cooking until everything is heated through and some of the rice grains get a nice crisp to them.

In a separate, small pan, scramble two eggs and throw the eggs in with the cooked rice in the large pan. Top with sesame seeds (I use black and white) and sriracha before serving.

Vegetarian Thai Peanut Enchiladas May 26, 2011

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, vegetarian.
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I saw a recipe for chicken peanut enchiladas on one of my favorite food blogs, Closet Cooking, a while ago.  I bookmarked it and promptly forgot about it, until it resurfaced in a search this week.  It looked really interesting, and I thought a vegetarian version would be just as good.  Check out the original post if you are a meat-eater (and for a picture—-I made this dish when I had a friend over, and we got so wrapped up in our conversation I completely forgot to take a picture of it!)

I subbed crumbled tempeh for the chicken and modified the vegetables using what I had in the house.  It was really, really good—who would’ve thought peanut sauce and melted cheese would go so well together??!

As soon as I make this again, I will be sure to post a picture, but in the meantime, just trust me on this one.  🙂  As it is written, it makes enough for two servings.  Double the ingredients listed if you want leftovers!  I wish I would have.

Vegetarian Thai Peanut Enchiladas
(Adapted from Closet Cooking)
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 red bell pepper (thinly sliced)
2 green onions (sliced)
1 large carrot (julienned)
4 oz tempeh, crumbled
1 handful spinach (chopped)
1 cup spicy Thai peanut sauce (either homemade or store-bought; if you are going store-bought, I like the San-J brand)
4 (8 inch) tortillas
1 cup jack and cheddar cheese (grated)
Chopped cilantro, for garnish

Method:

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees Farenheit.

Slice up your red pepper and carrot, and saute in a little olive oil until tender.  Add the crumbled tempeh and continue to saute until it is a little browned.  Add the chopped green onion and spinach, and saute until just wilted.  Remove from the heat, and stir in 1/2 cup peanut sauce.

In a small baking dish (I used an 8×8 brownie dish, and four enchiladas fit perfectly), lightly drizzle peanut sauce on the bottom of the dish. Fill each tortilla with a quarter of the tempeh-veggie mixture, roll it up, and place it seam-side down in the baking dish, on top of the peanut sauce.  Repeat with the remaining tortillas.  Drizzle some more peanut sauce on top of the rolled-up enchiladas, top with the shredded cheese and cilantro, and bake in the oven until the cheese on top is golden and melted.

Crab and Boursin Spring Lasagna May 16, 2011

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, fish, good for a group.
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A week before Mother’s Day, I started thinking about what to make for our now-annual family get-together at our house.  For the past few years, both Ryan’s family and my family have come over for a Mother’s Day dinner, and I wanted to make something that we haven’t made before, something that would please everyone, and something that would make enough for ten people to eat.  I think the past few years we made salmon one year, spinach artichoke pies another, and enchiladas for some other family gathering, but no lasagna or pasta dishes.

I remembered seeing a segment on the news a while back where a chef from 24 Grille in Detroit made a seemingly easy-to-make crab lasagna roll-up.  I googled it, and came across this recipe and video.  If you read the recipe and watch the video, you’ll notice that the way the recipe is written up is not at all like it is done in the video.  I debated for a day or two whether I should scrimmage the recipe before making it on Mother’s Day but ultimately decided not to, because it makes a lot of food and Ryan would be the only one eating it.  How hard could it be, right?  I even had a video to follow!

Well…it didn’t turn out like the roll-ups in the video.   I went from Plan A to Plan oh-my-god-what-am-I-going-to-do and feared I might have to go to Plan order-a-pizza.  But in the end, it all turned out!!  And it turned out great!  I ended up making a big pan of lasagna, and used no-boil lasagna noodles instead of the pre-boiled ones.  It looked realllllly soupy before it went into the oven, and I was SURE we’d be eating Hot-and-Ready pizzas for dinner, but somehow, miraculously, it all turned out.  I think it was the use of the no-boil noodles.  They soaked up a lot of the excess moisture as the lasagna baked and it was set up perfectly when it was time for it to come out of the oven.

Oh, a note—I made a mini vegetarian version of this for myself at the same time.  I mixed a portion of the cooked vegetables described below with boursin cheese, and layered the veggies and boursin alternately with sauce and noodles, and topped it all with cheese before baking.

Crab and Boursin Spring Lasagna
(Printable Recipe)

crab lasagna

Ingredients:

1 1/2 pounds (or about 22-24 ounces) of crab meat
16 ounces Boursin cheese
Sprinkle of Old Bay seasoning
1 bunch asparagus, cut into 1/2-inch segments
3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch segments
2 zucchini, diced
1 tsp basil
1 tsp thyme
Salt and pepper
24 ounces marinara sauce
1 1/2 cups Italian blend shredded cheese
1 package Barilla no-boil lasagna noodles

Method:

Chop the asparagus, carrots, and zucchini into 1/2-inch segments.  Heat a little olive oil in a saute pan, and cook the veggies, basil, thyme, and a little salt and peper over medium heat until tender-crisp.  Remove from the heat and set aside while you get the crab ready.

In a small sauce pan, melt the boursin over low heat, stirring frequently.  You don’t want it to be liquidy, but soft enough to make it easily spreadable.

Meanwhile, in yet another pan (or the veggie one cleaned out), heat a little olive oil.  Drain the crab (if necessary) and cook in the olive oil for about 5-7 minutes.  Sprinkle in some Old Bay seasoning.  When the boursin cheese is sufficiently melted, stir the crab into the cheese.

Prep a 9 x 13 lasagna pan by spraying it lightly with oil.  Spread 1/2 cup marinara on the bottom.  Layer your first layer of noodles on top of the marinara.  Spread a layer of crab/boursin on top of that.  Top with half of the veggies, some sauce, and then another layer of noodles.  Repeat by spreading the crab/boursin on top of the noodles, sprinkling the remaining veggies on top of that, layering another layer of noodles, topping THOSE noodles with sauce, and finally, sprinkling the shredded Italian blend cheese on top.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes.  Watch to see when the cheese is nicely browned, it should be done then.  Remove from the oven and let it rest at least 10 minutes to allow it to set.


Spinach and Green Onion Gouda Quiche April 4, 2011

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in breakfast, dinner, vegetarian.
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I made a quiche last night that was really, really good, but forgot to take a picture of it!  I usually make a variation of this quiche; this was my first time using gouda and it turned out so nice and creamy.  I had to bake it longer than I had thought I would, and you definitely need to let it set about 5 minutes after it comes out of the oven to contain the creaminess. It’s super delicious.  The recipe comes from Cooking Light, and has been blogged about on one of my go-to food blogs, Culinary in the Desert.  Head over there for a photo and write up!  I highly recommend this for a nice brunch meal or a breakfast-for-dinner night.  I made some oven-roasted potatoes to go alongside it.

Spinach and Green Onion Gouda Quiche

Ingredients:
1 pie crust (homemade or store-bought)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 garlic clove, minced
3 cups fresh baby spinach, chopped
1 cup milk
3 large eggs
4 ounces (about 1 cup) shredded smoked Gouda cheese (or a little more!)
3/4 teaspoon salt
Ground black pepper
1 tbsp dried basil
Pinch fresh grated nutmeg
1/4 cup shredded parmesan for the top of the quiche

Method:
Prepare your filling by heating the olive oil in a large saute pan.  Cook the green onions for a few minutes over medium, until slightly wilted.  Add in the minced garlic and spinach, and continue to cook until the spinach is also slightly wilted.

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the milk and eggs, then add the cheese, salt & pepper, basil, and nutmeg. Stir well, and then stir in the spinach mixture.  Pour the mixture into the prepared pie crust. Top with some shredded parmesan cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for at least 35 minutes.  I had to bake mine longer than that—about 45-50 minutes.  Insert a clean knife into the middle to test to see if it’s done—if the filling looks too runny or milky, let it cook a little longer.

Remove from oven and let it set for about 5 minutes before cutting into it.

Crispy Potato Enchiladas April 1, 2011

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, good for a group, vegetarian.
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Confession: I have made enchiladas TWICE this week.  On Tuesday, I made a Thai/Mexican fusion version with peanut sauce, red pepper, spinach, and tempeh, and on Thursday, I made a version inspired by Taco Bell. (The peanut enchilada recipe will be up soon; I forgot to take a picture and want to re-make it before I post it here.)

My absolute favorite menu item at Taco Bell is the crispy potato soft taco.  I don’t eat them often, but when I do, I like to get two and slather them with the Taco Bell green sauce packets.

With the Taco Bell soft taco in mind, I created a homemade enchilada version for dinner and it was out of this world!  I made a filling of spiced pan-fried potatoes, chopped spinach, plenty of green onion, tangy green sauce, and shredded cheddar cheese, put it in soft tortillas, and baked it in the oven until the cheese on top was melted and starting to brown.  They were delicious!

Crispy Potato Enchiladas
(Printable Recipe)

potato enchiladas

Ingredients:
2 or 3 medium-to-large potatoes, diced
Olive oil
1.5 tbsp Mexican spices (I used a mixture of Penzey’s southwestern seasoning and some smokey seasoning salt; you could also use some pre-made taco seasoning, or any kind of cumin/chipotle/cayenne mix)
2 cups (or 3 large handfuls) spinach, chopped
4 green onions, chopped
6 8-inch tortillas
10 oz green enchilada sauce
1 cup shredded cheese (or more, if you like a lot of cheese!)

Method:
Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees Farenheit.

Start by washing and dicing the potatoes.  I like to steam my potatoes before I put them in a saute pan to crisp them up, but if you have extra time, you could put them straight in a pan and cook them until soft but crispy.  If you want to go the steam-then-saute route, steam them either in one of those microwave steam bags, or in a steamer basket on the stove.  I usually steam them in the microwave for 5 minutes, then transfer to a pan with a little olive oil and saute them until they get browned and crispy on the outside.  Once you have the potatoes cooking in the pan and they are starting to brown, add the spices and continue to cook over low heat until they are crispy enough for your liking.

With the pan over low heat, add the chopped spinach and green onion to the potatoes.  Stir well, so the spinach and onions will begin to wilt.  Remove from heat.

Prepare your pan by pouring a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the pan and spreading it around so it just coats the whole pan.  Build your enchiladas one by one:   on each tortilla, spread a little green sauce, top with the potato mixture, sprinkle a little cheese, and roll it up!

potato enchilada filling

Place each rolled-up enchilada seam-side down in the prepared pan.  When all of your enchiladas are in the pan, drizzle the rest of the green sauce on top of them, top that with the rest of the shredded cheese, and bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese on top is melted and starting to brown.

Remove from oven and let the pan sit a minute or two before attempting to remove the enchiladas.  We topped them with sour cream, hot sauce, and a little cilantro before eating.  Yum!

inside of potato enchilada

Broccoli Cheddar Stromboli March 29, 2011

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, vegetarian.
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Broccoli Cheddar Stromboli

I decided to do something a little different from our usual Green Pizza weeknight meal recently, and made a broccoli cheddar stromboli.  A stromboli is really very similar to a pizza, just rolled up and brushed with olive oil and spices, but it is a nice change from the norm.  Plus, stromboli is a fun word to say, and I could not help but tell Toby the dog about a dozen times “Toby, I make-a da stromboli!!” while I was baking it up.

Using a pound of pizza dough made a big stromboli that barely fit on a pizza stone (I had to wrap it around in a U-shape to keep it on the stone in one piece!) and probably should have fed 4 people, but we are a hungry household.  🙂

So, stromboli!  A nice change from a pizza pie!  Try one today!  Throw some different veggies in it, changes up the spices, sprinkle some cheese on top—it’s almost impossible to make a rolled-up pizza taste bad.

Broccoli Cheddar Stromboli
(Adapted from Pizza by Brigit Binns)

Ingredients:

1 pound pizza dough (homemade or pre-made, like the kind you can buy at Trader Joe’s)
1 1/2 cup chopped broccoli (you’ll want to steam it before you put it in the stromboli; see below)
8 oz ricotta cheese
1/2 cup shredded or chopped cheddar (I used Vermont sharp white cheddar, yum!)
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup pizza sauce
Parmesan cheese
Olive oil (to brush on top)

Method:

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees Farenheit.  Place your pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven to pre-heat at this time.

Fill a saucepan with one inch of water and bring to a simmer. Place broccoli in a steamer basket over the simmering water, cover, and steam for 5-7 minutes until crisp tender. Remove strainer or basket from saucepan and let cool. Coarsely chop the broccoli and set aside. In a large bowl combine the ricotta, cheddar, garlic, basil, and salt and pepper. Mix well.

Place a large sheet of parchment paper on a pizza peel or large rimless baking sheet and place the ball of dough in the center. Dust the top of the dough with flour and, using a rolling pin, roll out to a 9-by-12-inch rectangle of even thickness.

With the long side of the dough facing you, spread the cheese mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border uncovered on all sides. Cover the cheese mixture with the pizza sauce, and then scatter the broccoli evenly over the cheese and sauce, and season generously with salt and pepper.

Unrolled Stromboli

Starting with the long edge nearest you, gently roll up the dough, lightly compressing the filling. Crimp firmly to seal, but avoid pressing down too hard.  Brush the roll lightly with olive oil, cut a few small steam vents in the top, and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Carefully slide the stromboli on the parchment onto the hot pizza stone. Bake until golden brown, about 25-30 minutes.

Remove the stromboli from the oven and transfer to a cutting board. Let the stromboli stand for 15 minutes then use a serrated knife to slice it crosswise into rounds.

Spicy Pasta with Veggie Sausage and Peperoncini March 8, 2011

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, vegetarian.
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Last month, I made a recipe from Bon Appetit for the Fly Trap’s granola.  Right under that recipe was another that sounded great to me—anything with peperoncinis, count me in! The original recipe calls for sausage and shrimp.  Gimme Lean vegetarian “sausage” is a great choice for making this meat-free, and I cooked a half-dozen shrimp on the side to add to Ryan’s portion.  We LOVE this—the first week I made it, we ate it two times that week and have had it at least weekly since then.

Spicy Pasta with Veggie Sausage and Peperoncini
(Adapted from Bon Appetit)

Pasta with Veggie Sausage and Italian Pepperoncini Sauce

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 package of Gimme Lean sausage
1/4 cup sliced peperoncini, plus 1/4-1/2 cup liquid from jar
1/2 cup finely diced onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
8 oz marinara sauce
1/3 cup half-and-half
8 oz pasta (a small shape, like penne, gemelli, or farfalle works best)
Grated parmesan or asiago for garnish
Optional:
Shrimp, for non-vegetarian version

Method:

Heat oil in heavy large pot over high heat. Add Gimme Lean sausage; cook until browned, breaking into pieces, about 4 minutes. Add onions, cook until translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Add peperoncini, spices, and peperoncini liquid; stir until most of liquid is absorbed, about 1 minute. Add marinara and cream, and simmer for a minute or two.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in another large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring often. Drain, and transfer pasta to pot with sauce; stir to incorporate. Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle with additional cheese.

If you want to add shrimp, I usually cook a half-dozen or so in a separate small saute pan (with a little cooking spray and salt & pepper), and just add them to Ryan’s bowl right before serving.

Really Easy Baked Parmesan Shrimp January 4, 2011

Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, fish, quick meal.
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Sometimes, I am a nice wife and make a fish or chicken dinner for Ryan.  This one was incredibly easy and used ingredients that I always have on hand.  The best kind of meal!  I usually keep a bag of Trader Joe’s large pre-cooked shrimp in the freezer.  Sometimes I’ll add them to pasta or stir fry for Ryan but this was a little departure from the shrimp-norm around our house.  The verdict?  Ryan said he’d “eat ten more plates of this” so I take that to mean it is a keeper.

Baked Parmesan Shrimp

baked parmesan shrimp

Ingredients (to serve one):

8-10 medium or large pre-cooked shrimp
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves minced garlic
Salt & pepper
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Method:

Pre-heat the oven to 425 Fahrenheit. If you are using frozen shrimp, thaw them in a bowl of room temperature water for 10-15 minutes.  While they are thawing, prep your marinade and breading.

In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic.  In another bowl, combine the breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese.  When the shrimp are thawed, toss them in the olive oil and lemon marinade, and season with salt and pepper.

One by one, remove them from the olive oil and lemon marinade, and toss them in the breadcrumb mixture.  Place them in a single layer on a baking sheet that has been sprayed lightly with cooking spray.  When all of the shrimp are on the sheet, spray the tops lightly again with the spray, and then bake in the oven for about 7-8 minutes, or until the tops start to turn golden.