Dressing balls

dressingballs2If you thought that I was going to say that I don’t like Thanksgiving food, share one recipe and then bow out of the turkey day food madness with one quick turn, you have predicted incorrectly. I will actually be sharing two more recipes (including this one), but none of them will be for a turkey. I have no idea when or if I’ll ever roast a whole turkey in my life–I’m sure I will for some holiday down the road– but that is way too much food for the two people (including me) that I feed. I don’t have a turkey, but I have a couple of things to go along with it.

First up is dressing balls. I was clicking through imgur yesterday and landed on a 20 year history of Thanksgiving foods for the past twenty years online, and I learned that dressing instead of stuffing is a relatively new preference. (I actually googled “20 year history of Thanksgiving foods” and found this, which is what I saw on imgur.) In 2006, a report came out declaring that stuffing in the cavity of the bird may not get hot enough to kill germs that could lead to salmonella, so cooks started to prepare dressing, which is the same as stuffing but doesn’t stuff anything but a casserole dish.

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Pumpkin ginger cheesecake pie

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I must confess that I don’t love Thanksgiving food. Don’t get me wrong; I don’t dislike it, but I never get excited about turkey or sweet potatoes, and I’m especially not going to tear down the door for a slice of pumpkin pie. In fact, some day, when I prepare my own Thanksgiving meal, I imagine always making some sort of ethnic food– curry and naan one year, empanadas the next, sushi after that, and so on. However, the day when I cook my own Thanksgiving dinner is not today, and as a food blogger, it is not only expected that I share a few Thanksgiving recipes, it is one of my responsibilities.

So, I took this responsibility very seriously.

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Chard, potato and goat cheese tart

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I had Swiss chard for the first time ever last week. I expected it to kind of be a kale-collard greens combo, but it wasn’t. It was really mild and colorful and good! It was even milder than spinach, which was a welcome surprise. I must admit, though, my favorite part is really how colorful and pretty it is– the bright magenta stalks are a welcome sight after a dark, dreary, traffic-filled drive home after work.

I might have actually eased into my chard introduction, because I didn’t just saute it and eat it plain. I saw this recipe for a chard, potato and goat cheese tart with red onion, and it sounded like it’d be delicious. Alas, I was correct. I can’t get enough of this savory tart, and I’ve made it twice in the past week. Continue reading “Chard, potato and goat cheese tart”

Spaghetti squash with Moroccan spices

spaghettisquash1Recently, I haven’t wanted to do a lot of cooking. I do cook, because I can be quite a persistent person when I want to be and I do actually enjoy cooking, and although it probably hasn’t been noticeable, it’s been a struggle. Coming up with new ideas of what to prepare is tough, and especially finding new recipes that you really enjoy can be even more difficult. It’s amazing how many meh recipes exist.

For example, there’s a cookbook that I’ve had for a few months now. It sounds like the recipes in it would be great– it’s from a rural grocery store that sells local goods and has a deli with most things made in-house. Lots of the recipes sound tasty, but the ones that I’ve tried so far have been enormous disappointments. I’ve only tried two, and I’m not ready to give up on all of the cookbook’s contents quite yet, but I just don’t understand. Are my tastes so drastically different from other people’s? I’ve never thought so, but this cookbook has me questioning my taste buds. Continue reading “Spaghetti squash with Moroccan spices”

Thai coconut curry soup

currysoup1So, it is now soup season. However, I don’t really like soup. Stews and chilis, I’m okay with, but I can’t get the least bit excited when I hear someone say that soup is for dinner. There’s so much liquid, so little substance in many soups; they never seem to actually fill me up, and they all seems to lack in the flavor department.

One of my coworkers started talking about soups the other day, and then she started to wax poetically about broth. “Are you serious?!?” I exclaimed. “WHO LIKES A BOWL OF BROTH! THAT IS EATING NOTHING!” I’m quite incredulous about this. It is just beyond me to look forward to a big bowl of nothing when meal time rolls around. Continue reading “Thai coconut curry soup”

Warm Brussels sprout salad

sprouts2Not only does the end of summer mean you have to pack up your shorts and sundresses, but it’s the time of your tearful goodbye to the bountiful tomatoes, summer squash, peppers and all of the lovely berries and produce of long days and warm nights.

Although it’s been fall for a few weeks, and I even pulled out my flannel shirts and sweaters almost a month ago, I have yet to transition well to cooler-weather food. During fall and winter it’s easy to crave carbs and warm cheesy toppings, but I find it to be quite a difficult time for eating vegetables. Frozen veggies just aren’t as good as fresh, and I don’t particularly crave squash or root vegetables.

I feel like the foods I’ve been sharing recently that aren’t representative of what I normally eat, and I’d like to change that. I typically eat a lot of vegetables, and when cooler weather comes around, I’m always at a loss for what to eat. I generally keep to spinach and broccoli, purchasing them weekly, and then I try to add some random vegetable I see at the store that looks okay. Although I mix up my meals, the veggies can get really boring, and I tire of them. This blog requires me to get out of my cooking habits, and I think it’s a great thing–I must break my habits and expand my cool-weather veggie horizons! Continue reading “Warm Brussels sprout salad”

Spicy applesauce

applesauce3My grandma makes really good applesauce. When I was a kid (and before then I’m assuming), she made applesauce with tart little green June apples from a few trees on her farm. She’d have a big bucketful, and I’d sit and watch her peel them, sometimes trying to help but more often than not giving up. It’s hard for little fingers to get the hang of neatly peeling an apple; I only recently learned the trick to gently swirling off a thin layer of skin with a knife, removing only the slightest bit of fruit and leaving the bounty to consume. As a kid, Grandma could peel three apples to my one, and her fruits remained intact while mine bore big ugly gashes. They all taste the same, though, and uncooked, that taste makes you pucker. No one was tempted to sneak a slice; one sample of raw June apple is enough for a lifetime. They cooked up quite nicely, though.

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Big cinnamon apple pancake

pancake4I have a not-so-secret secret. I don’t love brunch. It seems like everyone in the world except for me would eat brunch or breakfast foods for every meal if given the chance. I mean, breakfast food is fine, but I’d choose a sandwich and a salad over a stack of pancakes any day.

It’s not that I don’t eat breakfast either; I do, every day. I typically have some sort of fruit and a bowl of cereal (right now Great Grains Crunchy Pecan) or eggs if I’m feeling adventurous. But my friends know to not ask me to brunch; I’ll go occasionally, but it’s really not my thing. I can make all of that stuff for pennies! Even free range eggs cost less than a quarter each at the grocery store; you can buy a waffle iron for  $30 and supply endless brunches until the end of time for the cost of three restaurant brunches! Continue reading “Big cinnamon apple pancake”