Friday, November 26, 2010

Giving Thanks

I have so much to be thankful for and am in a place where I'm able to gratefully appreciate it. This year has been a roller coaster, but that's what makes us able to really love the good times in life.

Yesterday we had my father-in-law over for a huge dinner - way too much food for three people. However, if there's ever a day to go overboard, that's the day, right? The menu included:
  • Vegetarian "Neatloaf" - Special K cereal, brown rice, tofu, ricotta cheese, herbs, etc.
  • Crispy Yummies - potato, cheese, and sour cream casserole
  • Green Bean Casserole - a delicious vegan version
  • Sweet Potato and Kale Bread Pudding - definitely not vegan, but equally delicious
  • Sally Lunn Herbed Rolls
  • Cranberry Horseradish Sauce
  • Chocolate Pecan Pie
...and a new dessert that I can't stop thinking about - Pear Upside Down Cake...

Hope you had a bountiful Thanksgiving with family and friends!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Still A Classic

Tonight I had a hankering for an old classic, something that everyone knows and loves - grilled cheese and tomato soup.

As recently as a year or so ago, you could have caught me swearing that one processed food that I would never give up is Campbell's tomato soup. As healthy, natural, and organic as our diets are right now, I was willing to make this one sacrifice.

Well, I've been working on a project for my Mom's side of the family - I'm assembling a family cookbook to record all of the nostalgic and tasty recipes from this "foodie" side of the family, with grandma as the cornerstone. In doing this, I've received plenty of amazing recipes from family members across the country. You know that aunt or uncle who lives more than just a few hours away? You might see them once every five years or so? Well, a couple weeks ago that particular aunt sent me her recipe for "Tomato Bisque". This sparked the inspiration to break free from my Campbell's rut.

Apart from a lot of tomatoes, including my canned juice and whole tomatoes, I also used onion, carrot, celery, garlic, mushrooms, oregano, basil, thyme, and some cream - hey, noone said this was a low fat food. Everything simmered away for an hour or so and then hit the food processor until nice and creamy.

To go along with the soup, I made grilled cheese using "Bad Boy" bread from Blue Oven Bakery, mild cheddar cheese from Gibb's, and handmade pesto from Madison's.

Our bellies are SO happy right now...

CSA: Week 29

Getting close to the end of this year's season - our basket still looks amazing, though. A couple acorn squash (which have been delicious this year), a nice bunch of mustard greens, tatsoi, arugula, sweet potatoes, some tender broccoli, radish, and eggs. I'm cooking Thanksgiving dinner for some of my husband's family this year for the first time, so plenty of these items will be finding their way into a tasty tasty meal.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

CSA: Week 28

We will be eating salads and sauteed greens galore this week - look at all this green! I love the fact that Eaton Farm explores different types of greens, especially Asian greens that I haven't really eaten or cooked with that much. My horizons are expanding every week and it's tasty as heck.

Tonight I'm going to be making my Peruvian Quinoa Bake and I think I'll throw in some sauteed kale for a little extra treat. Quinoa, black beans, onions, red and green bell peppers, mushrooms, milk, eggs, and smoked mozzarella cheese - warm, aromatic comfort food on a nippy November night.

CSA: Week 27

The key ingredient in this week's share was STARCH - look at this bounty of potatoes and baby sweet potatoes! I'm definitely putting these parcels into storage in anticipation of Thanksgiving - these will be put to good use.

I'm also really enjoying a new Asian green that I've never had before called Tatsoi - it's the dark green baggie on the left. Very tasty on sandwiches or salads, it's got a nice texture and crunch factor.

The abundance of winter squash in our fall CSA is causing me to think outside the box a little for our meals. This past week I roasted two acorn squash with some Jamaican curry powder, salt, and olive oil. I then scooped out the sweet caramel-ey flesh and rolled it in a tortilla together with Mexican rice, simmered black beans, pepper jack cheese, and fresh salsa to make a REALLY tasty burrito.

Chipotle, kiss my rear.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Happy Halloween!

CSA: Week 26

This week was the first pick-up for the "fall CSA" from Eaton Farm. It will run for 4 weeks during the month of November. The highlight of the basket had to be the absolutely humongous head of what I'm assuming to be bok choy - 3 or 4 people alone stopped me at the market to ask what kind of green it was.

CSA: Week 25

This week was our only week the whole season where we weren't able to pick up our share. My husband and I were in Columbus seeing one of our favorite bands, The Legendary Pink Dots, so my sister-in-law took our share for the week. The show was amazing, and it was good to be able to share the bounty of our CSA.