Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Holiday Dinner with the Roommies

Our household likes to get together now and again for a meal... but we're all so darn busy it doesn't happen very often. We decided to do Kris Kringle and a meal to celebrate the holidays.

Apparently I'm the only one in the house who loves cauliflower, so my repeated ordering of it in our farm basket was, unbeknownst to me, not making everyone's day. I decided to show them a recipe that wasn't just cauliflower and wasn't indian food. Growing up we used to eat a lot of soup and it tended to be whatever we had on hand, potato leek, cauliflower, broccoli, you name it!

So I contributed Cauliflower Soup, artichokes and a Berry Betty.

Cauliflower Soup

1 small onion, diced
1 head cauliflower chopped
2-3 small yukon potatoes diced
1-2 pints, quarts, liters veggie broth (I like the no-chicken myself)
some oil
salt and pepper

In a medium heavy bottomed sauce pan sautee the diced onion until translucent. Add cauliflower and let cook for about 5 minutes over low heat. Add potatoes and stock. Let simmer until the vegetables are tender enough to blend.
Using a hand blender or traditional one, blend until smooth. Add salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste. Serve with a dash of nutmeg on top!

Artichokes are also a favorite from growing up - steam them over low heat for a loooooong time until you can easily pull out the leaves. Just don't burn yourself. Dip them in mayo, melted butter, whatever you think tastes good!

The rest of the meal was brown rice pasta with pesto and veggies, polenta sticks and a salad:

Brown Betty
A betty is something somewhere between a crisp and a cobbler, no oatmeal but less caky that a cobbler. Growing up my sisters and I would throw these together for a quick dessert. I always like to keep a bag of frozen berries in the fridge in case I need a quick and easy dessert!

1 bag (1lb?) frozen berries - I like TJ's berry cherry (cherries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries) It could also be apples, peaches, etc.
1/2 C brown sugar
1/3 C cup flour (in this recipe I used mostly almond flour with a bit of Bob's Redmill Gluten Free Flour)
3-4 T butter or margerine

Pour fruit into a casserole dish or baking pan. Using your fingers mix the butter, sugar and flour together and sprinkle over top. This time I added an extra kick:

1 C pecan pieces
1/4 C brown sugar
1 T lemon juice

In a cast iron pan, brown pecan bits until warm and fragrant. Add brown sugar and let heat up. Add lemon juice and stir until pecans are fully coated in goodness.
Sprinkly this on top of the crust and bake for 10-15 minutes until the berries are bubbling!

Erica made some amazing chocolates that she shared with us:

Roommates having fun with gifts:
Grace and Erica

Jess trying on her new hat

1 comment:

Jess W said...

Your baking differed my BRAIN this time. This new 'Betty' category of food is my oyster! The cauli soup was an eye-opener too. For the record we don't DISLIKE cauliflower, it's just coming up with something to do with it felt for us like, say, trying to talk to little kids if you're bad with kids. Kids are innately cool, though (like cauliflower apparently), so you still want to. I think we were more confounded than unhappy.