recipe // shaved brussels sprouts salad with a prosciutto vinaigrette & pretzel croutons

So…this salad. It’s amazing. A wonderful combination of brussels sprouts, cherry tomatoes, goat cheese, a sweet and spicy vinaigrette with diced prosciutto, and the pi├Ęce de r├ęsistance: pretzel croutons. Continue reading

recipe // smoky minestrone with tortellini and pesto

recipe // smoky minestrone with tortellini and pesto

This minestrone recipe is a great standby I found on Food52. It’s hearty and packed full of vegetables, with some bacon thrown in to give it the smoky quality in its name. Be prepared for a lot of chopping, but from start to finish this only takes me a little over an hour to make, including the 30-40 minute simmering time. As the recipe suggests, this is great served with fresh basil pesto on top, a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and some Parmesan cheese, with some good bread on the side. Continue reading

recipe // roasted eggplant with buttermilk sauce & pomegranate seeds

My latest cookbook obsession is Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty. I received it as a gift and let it sit on the shelf unused for a while, wrongly assuming that the recipes were too labor intensive for everyday meals. Living with someone who loves anything made with eggplant though, I couldn’t avoid making the cover dish for long. Continue reading

recipe // warm-the-heart chili

This chili recipe comes from my friend Lauren, who is not only a great photographer but also an excellent cook. I’m convinced that this recipe may just be the perfect weeknight meal. As a bonus, it’s the perfect comfort food for escaping chilly February weather with your Valentine. Continue reading

recipe // wild rice gratin with kale, caramelized onions and baby swiss

Knowing that I have a bit of an obsession with the Smitten Kitchen blog, my wonderful boyfriend bought me the new Smitten Kitchen cookbook for our anniversary a few months ago. I’ve cooked a handful of the recipes, some of them multiple times, and stickynoted almost all the rest for future occasions (my real world version of pinning). Everything I’ve made so far has been awesome – I honestly can’t recommend this cookbook enough.

The wild rice gratin with kale, caramelized onions, and baby swiss is one of the recipes I’ve made on multiple occasions. It’s kind of like hearty comfort food, packed with rice, veggies and just the right amount of cheese, and coated with a crisp bread crumb crust. It’s gotten rave reviews from vegetarians and meat eaters alike, and is a relatively easy dish for a midweek meal. Continue reading

recipe // butternut squash soup with pumpkin seed-mint pesto

This is a great fall recipe from Sunset. They suggest serving it in mini pumpkins, and using fresh pumpkin instead of squash, but I was not feeling that ambitious for a post-work meal. Instead, I used the pre-cut butternut squash from Trader Joe’s (2 bags of it, to be exact), an immersion blender to puree the soup, and a food processor to make the pesto, and in under an hour was serving it up in perfectly acceptable ceramic bowls with a side of olive bread. Continue reading

recipe // roasted brussels sprouts with garlic aioli

This recipe was a Pinterest find from the blog Costa Kitchen. The photographs looked so delicious that I ended up making the recipe the same day I found it, and I have a feeling it won’t be the last time. It was a breeze to make and tasted incredible – Nick got out a fork because eating them by hand wasn’t happening fast enough. Continue reading

recipe // pan-roasted chicken with garlic-lemon green beans and potatoes

I found this recipe on Repinly where it’s #20 on the all-time most popular pin list. It was originally pinned by Alexandria Harrison, but the recipe is from Real Simple and it seemed like an easy option for a midweek meal. With just about 20 minutes of prep time, minimal dishes to wash, and the result being a complete meal for four people (or in our case, a meal for two people plus leftovers for lunch the next day), I want to find 10 more recipes just like this and make them in a rotation during the workweek.

As I said, the amount of prep time was actually not that much more than the 15 minutes the recipe claimed. Generally, I assume that anything that says 15 minutes of prep time really is more like 15 minutes of assembly after I spend upwards of a half hour chopping things. In this case, even with all the washing, chopping, and mixing included I went from nothing to having the pan in the oven in under 20 minutes. As a disclaimer, I did use green beans that were already trimmed and washed by Trader Joe’s, so I didn’t have to do much to those, which made things that much faster. Continue reading

recipe // garlic cheesy bread with roasted garlic and herb butter

This garlic cheesy bread is the number one most popular pin of all time on Pinterest, according to Repinly. It’s had close to 100,000 repins, which is pretty crazy to think about, and was originally pinned by Mandy Wakeman. I had a feeling this would be good, seeing as it’s a combo of bread, cheese, butter and garlic – seriously, what’s not to like? I was a little worried about how the bread would turn out though, seeing as I don’t have a stand mixer and kind of winged it with my food processor based on prior knowledge of making pizza dough.

To start with, I substituted all-purpose flour for bread flour. I did a little research about the difference between the two, and learned that bread flour has slightly more gluten and therefore generally creates a more chewy and/or lofty bread than all-purpose flour. In most cases, all-purpose flour can be substituted for bread flour, but you don’t want to go the other way around and sub in bread flour for all-purpose flour. Seeing as I don’t make a ton of bread regularly, I opted to use the all-purpose flour I had rather than buy a bag of bread flour. My bread definitely didn’t end up as large as the photos from the original pin, which I think probably had something to do with this substitution, but the texture seemed fine. Continue reading