Monthly Archives: October 2010

spicy cauliflower soup

Like I’ve said before, I think cauliflower gets a bad rap but it can be quite deliscious when prepared well.  I was excited to see a cauliflower soup recipe in Alice Water’s The Art of Simple Food because soup weather is in full swing and how can you go wrong with Alice?

For the first few years of our relationship, Joseph wasn’t really into soups.  He was fine with it as an appetizer before dinner, but it was never really enough for him as a meal on its own.  Or so he thought.  Something has changed this fall and we’ve been making a lot of soups and Joseph’s getting pretty into it. Which makes me happy because I love a simple dinner of soup and fresh baked bread and it’s even better when they’re so easy to make, like this one. Continue reading

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baked chicken meatballs and spaghetti

It’s amazing to me how quickly fall came.  It’s like it was 90 degrees one day, and 50 the next.  I like fall a lot, but I hate how short it is.  But when it cooled off, I was thinking about food (as I very often do, especially when I’m consoling myself over the weather) and about how I can now make pasta (thanks to our wonderful new pasta roller), and I suddenly had this craving for a warm, cozy dish that I haven’t had in years.

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thai basil chicken

My boss got me a subscription to Cook’s Illustrated last Christmas and I love it.  The first recipe that we made from the magazine was this Thai basil chicken dish and we’ve made it many, many times since then.  It’s juicy, it’s spicy, it’s garlicy, and it has Thai basil.

I first fell in love with thai basil when I was maybe 13 or so when I got some panang curry at a Thai restaurant in Bethesda.  I had never heard of it before and I just fell in love with its distinctive flavor.  It’s known for having a clove and anise-like flavor, but if you’re not an anise fan don’t let that deter you.  I’ve never been an anise fan myself and, not to beat the horse any more or anything, but I love Thai basil. Continue reading


butternut squash soup

butternut squash soup

Ok, so I know how long it’s been since my last post.  Don’t worry, I have been eating, I’ve just been out of town a lot (including an amazing food and wine festival in Disney World!) and have been really busy.  But I do have some great things to share with you (just wait for the chicken meatballs!), including this butternut squash soup.

I don’t know if there’s a more quintessentially fall soup than butternut squash soup.  Unless maybe you make pumpkin soup….  I used to get a curried pumpkin soup with apples from the Whole Foods in DC that I loved.  It was so warm and spicy and the apples gave it a wonderful tartness that sent it over the edge.  So this fall I was hoping to find a similar recipe, but for butternut squash soup.  I didn’t quite, but I found this recipe from Emeril Legasse that was so easy, I had to try it.  It may not have the apples, but it’s really good, and like I said, very easy. Continue reading


quick and easy cornbread

Growing up I loved corn bread, but rarely actually got the good stuff.  You see my mom, as wonderful as she is, is convinced that the best corn bread is just cornmeal mixed with water.  She may have put some other stuff in there, but that’s pretty much what it tasted like.  Her early years were spent in Arkansas and she’s convinced that cornbread should never have any sweetner and should be as gritty as possible.  My sister and I eventually gave up on trying to convince her that sweet cornbread was infinitely better and learned to stop asking for cornbread altogether.

A couple years ago I was searching online for a cornbread recipe (because no way was I going to ask my mom for her recipe!) and found a very highly rated recipe called “Golden Sweet Cornbread” with the tagline, “If you like sweet cornbread, this is the recipe for you!”  When I saw how simple the ingredients were, I was completely sold.  These are things that we always have on hand and it’s so easy to make that I can throw it together almost faster than you can Joseph can say, “Let’s make chili tonight.” And some recipes have a stick or two of butter, and as good as I’m sure it is, I like to have a couple of pieces of cornbread with my meal without having to worry about artery overload.  Continue reading


turkey and bean chili

I didn’t watch much football growing up, but for several years close family friends would come over to watch the Superbowl with us.  My mom would make a huge pot of chili, a salad, and brownies ahead of time and she and Amy, the mom of our friends, would go out to get dinner and watch a movie leaving the kids with the dads to watch the game.  I guess it’s because of that that I’ve always associated chili with football, so when Joseph’s favorite football team, the Texas A&M Aggies, had a rare televised game this past Thursday, I decided we had to make chili.

I’ve always thought that I only like vegetarian chili, but I had chili turkey chili at a friend’s house over the summer and I loved it.  So we picked up some turkey and beans and got to cooking.  The cool thing about chili is that it’s so versatile.  If you have veggies you need to use up, throw them in.  Don’t have fresh veggies on hand?  Throw in some frozen corn.  If you don’t like meat in your chili, don’t put it in.   If you want a meatier chili, leave out some or all of the beans and maybe even some of the veggies if you’re really feeling carnivorous. Continue reading