Tuesday, October 28, 2014

CCC October

October was an absolutely crazy month for me at work.  I made three separate trips to New York, and was generally swamped when I was home too.  Cooking definitely took a back seat to spending time with Charlotte (and sleeping).  Luckily, I made three of the recipes early in the month before work went nuts.  When we got home from New York on Sunday after having been in New York all week (Paul and Charlotte met me in New York mid-week, and we decided to extend our stay into a mini-vacation), we were all craving some light, fresh vegetable dishes (well, maybe not Charlotte!).  I took the opportunity to make a couple more of the recipes.  Again, we really enjoyed all of the recipes.  It was hard to rank the ones that I made, but I did, just for fun.  I'm looking forward to making the other recipes in time for our make-up month next spring.

#1: White beans with artichokes

I served this for dinner with the carrot salad, sliced cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, cheese and crackers.  I was worried that Paul would complain about the lack of a "main course," and think that dinner wasn't substantial enough.  After a couple of bites of this he stopped and said it was "a perfect dish, perfectly balanced."  I was amazed.  It really was good, but I hadn't expected such a ringing endorsement.  I used some dried beans that I had cooked and stashed in the freezer, delicious grilled artichokes that I found in the refrigerator section of my grocery store, and a really nice Purple Haze goat cheese.  The mixture was served over fresh mizuna from our CSA.  Good ingredients really do make all of the difference.

#2: Roasted cauliflower with lemon and paprika

I love this spice-roasted cauliflower recipe, but most of the time when I make cauliflower I take the easy, olive oil, salt, pepper, and stick it in the oven approach.  This was such a nice change of pace.  The recipe didn't sound like much, but the lemon juice and paprika really make this something special.  Especially with my pretty purple cauliflower from my CSA.  This is definitely one that I'll make again.

#3: Carrot, orange and cashews   

I loved the flavors of this one.  The roasted cashews and cumin seeds are a great combination  It only dropped on my list because it's a bit fussy.  I hate segmenting oranges, and cutting the carrots into matchsticks also took some time.  I think next time I would just shred the carrots in the food processor, and peel and slice the oranges into rounds.

#4: Broccoli salad with Asian-style dressing

I almost always just steam broccoli, so it was fun to try something different.  I thought the sauce was delicious.  I found myself wishing I had made more of it, so I could eat it over rice.

#5: Vegeree

I thought this was a little bit boring, but Charlotte loved it.  Unfortunately she picked out all of the vegetables except the onions, but I'm happy whenever she eats what we're eating.  I do wish this had more flavor.  My vegetables were also dry, and I added extra oil.  I think to make this really delicious it probably would need some more fat, but it was a nice dish as is.