Monday, May 4, 2009

Food Journaling

The blog has been a bit light on crafting because I haven't crafted in forever.  Bad me!  I've been busy with other things.  I don't intend to stop crafting altogether, just an extended leave of absence.  I've really cut down on my tv time (the tivo is really piling up!) because I've been trying to get out more: going for long walks in the evening, jogging in the morning.  I've been cooking more seriously ever since we finished the kitchen remodel, and I've been giving lots of time to reading and playing with Theo.  Just no time in the day for anything else at the moment.  I'll get to it, eventually.

I have, however, been cooking and baking up a storm lately.  I was complaining to Husband yesterday that even though I make yummy food every week, I have yet to really repeat any of my recipes because I forget all about them once I make them.  He suggested I make a log of what I make, so I can look back on it for idea. He, of course, suggested my iphone, but I thought, hey, why not dust off the old blog?  So here we are.  I haven't been taking pictures, so it won't be as pretty as I would like, but I figure I can at least link to the recipes I make (and there are pictures if you follow the link).

So here we go.  Here is what I am eating this week:

  • Black bean and roasted red pepper soup, courtesy of Closet Cooking.  I have a new found love for roasted peppers.  I had no idea they were so easy and delicious!  I go by these directions, but you can roast peppers a number of ways.  I am so glad it's pepper season!  I couldn't find poblano chilies (which is crazy because I checked three different stores and I live in Southern California!), so I just substituted more red peppers (I'll bet the stores are just dumb and marked them as ancho chilies.  I'll have to check on that.).  I was actually going to add jalapeno, but then I forgot to add it, oops!  It turned out pretty darn delicious!  I used an immersion blender and pureed it a bit because I wanted it to be more like soup and less like chili.  I also got a rotisserie chicken from Costco (only $5, who knew?), and shredded some of that in for some added protein.  I also topped it with avocado and some crumbled up tortilla chips.  Yum!  I want to also mention that this soup is totally healthy.  It's mostly veggies and some black beans, which are big on fiber, not on fat.  Just don't sprinkle too many chips.  Heh.
  • Brussels sprouts with bacon and lemon, courtesy of Closet Cooking.  I've never been a fan of brussels sprouts, but I've also never quite hated them.  I figure if bacon doesn't make them delicious, nothing will.  It's still a little on the bitter side, but the lemon juice and bacon flavor help a lot with it.  I also used turkey bacon because it's healthier and equally tasty to me.  A little shallot tends to go a long way, so I bought a small one, but I actually thought it could have used a little more.  So go for a bigger one if you try this.  Overall, I think this is totally yummy.
  • Warm butternut squash and chickpea salad, courtesy of Smitten Kitchen.  I know I said I haven't really repeated a recipe, but I actually made this salad just last week.  It is so freaking good.  I had to go to Whole Foods to find tahini (the closest Whole Foods is 20 miles's a travesty they don't have one closer!), but your local grocery store might have it in the peanut butter section, if it isn't lame like my grocery store is.  Also, Trader Joe's sells small packages of pre-cut butternut squash.  They're relatively inexpensive, and I really hate cutting butternut squash, so I just used 3 of those packages.  I wish I had tried this recipe in the fall when the ingredients were more in season.  Thanks to my sister for recommending it to me!
  • Key lime meltaways, courtesy of Smitten Kitchen.  I saw a nice looking bag of key limes at the store last week that I just couldn't pass up.  I've made these once before (my first blog post even!), and they are still positively delicious.  They have been a favorite at work today.
  • Blackberry cobbler, courtesy of The Pioneer Woman.  They had a big container of blackberries at Costco for $2.99.  I couldn't pass it up.  I love blackberries.  They are my favorite fruit to bake with, so bake with them I did.  I decided on cobbler because they're easy and if you'll notice the list above, I was already pretty busy in the kitchen (also because I don't have a tart pan and pies are hard).  I looked for a recipe that had a picture that looked pretty close to the cobblers my mom made growing up, and this one looked pretty close.  I don't have self rising flour (I think keeping 3 different kinds of flour is my limit), but I checked online and found this conversion:
1 c. self rising flour = 1 c. all-purpose flour + 1 1/4 tsp. baking powder + 1/8 tsp. salt

It worked for me.  I also used a ton more blackberries than it called for because the container from Costco had about 4 cups worth.  I basically just kept adding blackberries until the pan couldn't hold any more (~ 3 1/2 cups).  Hey it's healthier with a higher fruit to dough ratio, right?  This turned out so delicious that Husband and I ate 2/3 of it yesterday afternoon.  Having a freshly baked dessert sitting on the counter while cooking is a dangerous, dangerous thing!

Husband was also kind enough to lend a hand and make a pizza (with mozzarella cheese, peperoni, and green bell peppers), but there's no fancy recipe for that.  We just buy the ready-made whole-wheat dough at Trader Joe's (it's so delish!), and top it with whatever.

So that's what I'm eating this week (plus my usual salad for dinner).  So far all of these recipes are definitely good enough to make again.


Spectater said...

i just made the chickpea and squash salad the other day! sadly, i don't think Bagel likes it very much.

JuLo said...

Lucky! I can't find decent butternut squash at the moment. That's ok, though. We get all the summer fruits and vegetables earlier than the rest of the country, I hear, so I'm not really in the mood for fall food.

I hope your bagel doesn't end up with your husband's food issues!