Thursday, January 28, 2010

Seeing Orange/Root Vegetable Crumble

Apparently I only eat orange foods. I didn't know this about myself until I was doing a TBD recap and I noticed that since the white bean dip every recipe I have written about has been orange or at least orange-tinted. What's worse is that I have already mentioned this whole orange fixation before. I assure you, I really do eat a whole lot of other color foods, but for whatever reason I don't seem to write about them. On that note, I think that today's recipe will be the last orange one for awhile; although my love for orange food is far from waning, I think it's time to mix things up around here.

When I told my mom that I was making a root vegetable crumble this past weekend, her response was "well, finally." Clearly I have been talking about this for a very long time and I was just waiting for the right moment to make a rich, cheesy dish.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Homemade Sunshine/Blood Orange Tart

The fact that citrus is considered a winter fruit always makes me want to laugh, or at least smile a little. I love that in the months of gloomy darkness the shining flavors of oranges, grapefruits and clementines are at their best. This weekend as I was making this tart, methodically cutting off the rinds and segmenting each blood orange with patience and precision, I was lucky enough to have rays of sunshine pouring into my living room. It was a spectacular break, between the beautiful colors of the oranges, their powerfully enticing aroma and the bright sun, I could not have been happier. By the time I made it to the last orange my hands were stained a pinky-red hue and a gorgeous mound of blood orange segments stood beside me. But the beauty of the segments was nothing compared the rinds, piths and membranes from the oranges, which without a doubt composed the most beautiful and aromatic pile of 'garbage' I have ever come across.

The funny thing about this tart is that a year ago I would probably not have made it. The thought of whole cooked citrus definitely did not appeal to me even though I love most citrus desserts.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Frustration/Sweet Potato Cauliflower Soup

In my life there are three kinds of recipes: the ones I make on a whim; the ones I bookmark and forget about; and the ones I bookmark, look at for months, keep saying I want to make, but never do. Well, until I do, at which point I usually yell at myself for waiting so long to make something that I knew would turn out so well. That's what happened with this soup, which was so good it made me sad that I only have about six weeks left of winter, and therefore only have six weeks left to make it again. Ok, that's a lie, I am dying for winter to be over but I do wish I had made this soup earlier that way I would have had more opportunities to make it.

All of this started last week when I finally bought garam masala. Forgive me for ranting, but I hate how busy the gym/yoga is in January. For those of you whose New Year's resolution is to lose weight or work out more, good for you. Seriously, I respect it, but why is it that every January newbies start crowding the gym/yoga studio, leaving no space for nuts like me? The point is that last week when there was no space for me at the yoga studio, feeling dejected and frustrated I made my way to the kitchen supply store down the street.

Monday, January 18, 2010

No Regrets/Asian Salmon + Farro Hash

I have a confession to make, I may have a very real crush on the man who sold me this piece of salmon on Saturday. It was the perfect first encounter, I flirted just enough to get the very best piece of fish and he oh-so-kindly acquiesced. As I walked away from the fish counter, he winked and reminded me to always maintain my sense of humor. Gently batting my eyelashes I stopped, looked at him and said, "I'll be seeing you very soon."

The truth is, I probably will be seeing him soon if only because I finally found a decent piece of fish in Montreal and now I want more. Montreal is notorious for it's shortage of good fish; this combined with my 'fish snobbism' and aversion to supermarket fish means that I rarely get to eat it.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Daring Cooks/Satay

This month's Daring Cook's Challenge was to make Thai satay. I have never made satay before but was pleasantly surprised to find out how simple it is. I think that the simplicity of this recipe makes it worthwhile to keep on hand because it can so easily be made on a whim and the marinade is an ideal balance between tangy and rich adding a deliciously intense flavor to the chicken (or whatever meat you use).

The January 2010 DC challenge was hosted by Cuppy of Cuppylicious and she chose a delicious Thai-inspired recipe for Pork Satay from the book 1000 Recipes by Martha Day.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Health Kick/Creamy White Bean Sage Dip

My lunch yesterday consisted of a "salad" in a fried tortilla bowl, poutine and nachos. Anyone who knows me also knows how unlike me this is, I usually tend to eat more wholesome and healthy options. That doesn't mean I don't love a good order of sweet potato fries or poutine now and then, but usually I steer clear. I wish I could say this lunch was a fluke or a last resort, but really it was the third of it's kind this past weekend, not including decadent late night eats. I guess that's what happens when you're still in vacation mode, but by yesterday afternoon I was feeling pretty terrible. All of this was a great reminder of why I usually eat healthy; unhealthy food is called that for a reason and it really just doesn't make you feel good the way that food should make you feel.

You may be asking yourself, if this eating behavior is so out of character, why I even ate this way for two days. Well, before I even had a chance to settle down in Montreal, I left again. My friends and I all headed up to Mont Tremblant for a freezing weekend in the mountains. Although I would like to say that I was courageous enough to ski and actually take advantage of being in the mountains, I did nothing of the sort.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Back to School/Indian Vegetable Curry

Starting school after a long vacation filled with adventures, friends and family usually fills me with an impending sense of gloom, no specific feeling per se, but an overall melancholic disposition. Surprisingly, today, every fold of my shirts and zip of my luggage is making me smile rather than tear up. Maybe it's because it's my last semester and the nostalgia of graduating is making me want to stay in college forever, or maybe the masochist in me is dying for some negative twenty-degree weather. That being said, even though going back to school isn't as troubling as usual, I couldn't help but feel a small pang of sadness when I locked my door this morning. It definitely helps that I left a little something behind so that my family would not forget me (at least not right away). This time, it wasn't world peace cookies, but a week's worth of lunch for my sister.

It looks like she'll be eating Indian vegetable curry stew for the next few weeks (oops I think I made too much of a good thing again), at least it is so good that there is no way she will get bored of it.