Cooking adventures, part V

+ Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup: my notes for this say, very succinctly, “Halved, very good!” Looking at the pictures I do seem to remember making and enjoying it, but after 4 months, it’s all a little hazy.

+ Creamy Wild-Rice Soup with Smoked Turkey: I substituted cooked chicken for the turkey and left out the sherry. A very satisfying soup for when you want something a bit different than chicken noodle.

+ Beef Chili: I really liked this, although I reduced the seasonings across the board and next time would reduce the chili powder even further. I didn’t make the biscuits called for here, instead making, I think, drop biscuits.

+ Rosemary Split Pea Soup: I wanted to make a split pea soup with some unexpected flavors–I grew up thinking that I hated split pea soup when what I actually hated was bland split pea soup (this is not an aspersion on my mother, who is a great cook). This was a really nice version, although I think I’d cut back on the rosemary just a tad–it was the only thing I really tasted

+ Spanish Tortilla: I took this recipe and adapted it practically out of recognition. It was still delicious. I also had some trouble with the flipping thing, so I ended up finishing it under the broiler and it was fine. I’d suggest serving it with some other substantial dish, like sausages, just to add some heft to the meal. Or it would be fine as a lunch.

+ I also made a cauliflower soup recently, of my own invention. Nothing terribly radical, except that I resisted the usual desire to make it a cream soup and just added a touch of milk and some cheese.

+ I tried the Spinach-Rice Casserole from the old Moosewood Cookbook, but it was on one of those nights where I left my brain somewhere else and all sorts of things went wrong. I forgot the tamari and, probably most problematic, didn’t cover it while it was baking. It was still okay, but I didn’t love it instantly. Sometime when my brain is back I’ll try it again to see if it’s improved by actually following the directions.

+ I also made the Indonesian Rice Salad from the same, which is always a nice addition.

+ Chickpeas are one of my favorite foods and definitely my favorite bean. I’ve been making various adaptations of the Oven-Roasted Chickpea recipe from the newest Joy of Cooking since the summer. I really like adding a touch of cumin while they roast and some lemon juice afterwards, but it’s hard to go wrong with these.

+ I tried the Baked Eggs from Joy of Cooking during Cheese Week, but something went wrong and they were horribly disappointing, with overly baked yolks and unexciting whites. I may try them again at some point, but in general I’ll stick to soft boiled eggs.

+ Cuban Beans and Rice, also from Joy of Cooking, has been a nice lunch option for me during Lent. Very simple, but quite tasty. And in that nice category of flavorful without being overwhelmingly spicy–though I will freely admit that when it comes to spiciness I tend to be a complete wimp.

+ Double Chocolate Cherry Thumbprints: I made a batch for my parish’s Christmas Market. I really liked the texture, but have to admit that I had expected something a bit more chocolatey. Not sure if I should adjust my expectations or the recipe on this one.

+ Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti: Made for my family’s Christmas box, although I changed a lot about them. I couldn’t find hazelnuts anywhere, so I substituted almonds. My sister doesn’t like coffee, so I put some cinnamon and vanilla in instead of the espresso. My family still appreciated them and they were really easy to make.

+ Apple-Yogurt Cake: I made this right before the Fast started and ooh, it was delicious. I’m a huge fan of moist cakes and this fits that category perfectly. However, the lightness of the flavors keeps it from feeling too rich, and all in all I loved this. Will definitely be making it again. I did use 1/4 t anise extract in place of the anise liqueur, which worked just fine.

+ Peanut Sesame Noodles: I’ve made the sauce for this several times, though I’ve put it over rice and with a different assortment of vegetables. It’s still delicious and quick, and one can never have too many peanut sauces.

+ Crisp Rosemary Flatbread: I made this for my church’s New Year’s party. I didn’t have any, but I am reliably informed that they were good. Oh, and super super easy, which is good when you’re one of the people planning the party.

+ Basil Bread: I made this for a meeting of local priests, along with this potato soup, which continues to be amazing, and Green Beans with Caramelized Onions. It all came together really well and they all enjoyed their lunch.

+ Parslied Carrots: From the Joy of Cooking again. A nice side dish with more flavor than carrots sometimes have.

+ Also from Joy of Cooking the Ultra-Orange Cake, which is basically a crazy/wacky cake without the chocolate and with orange juice. Quite delicious, although I hardly had any. Why did I hardly have any? Well, sadly, I’m having to eat gluten-free. I developed a weird rash on one of my fingers this fall and couldn’t figure it out until a friend mentioned that that’s what happens to her when she eats wheat. I tried cutting it out and it helped. So, for the forseeable future, I’m on at least a wheat-free diet. I don’t have any super noticeable digestive problems, so sometimes I cheat. (Hence the bite of orange cake.) I also made a double batch of this, since it was for the local Sunday of Orthodoxy Vespers.

+ For the same Vespers I made Coconut Rice Pudding, for us non-wheat eaters, combining a couple of different recipes. A., the friend I mentioned, totally outshone me with her delicious wheat-free brownies though. Mmm, those brownies were good.

+ For our church’s Nativity meal, I made the White Rabbit Salad from the Moosewood Cookbook. It was good, although it got a bit funny looking after a few days (it still tasted fine, was just weird and watery). I didn’t love it, but it would make a nice side dish for the right meal.


1 Comment

Filed under cooking adventures

One response to “Cooking adventures, part V

  1. Rosemary split-pea soup and flatbread – instantly bookmarked for later cooking! Thanks for the recipe dump, I’m always tempted by so many of the things you post.

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