If there is one thing I love, it is weekends spent at home with very few outside commitments and no need for a morning alarm. Last weekend set up exactly that way, so I took advantage by making a list of recipes I’d been meaning to try and knocking all but one of them out. In contrast, there are still 5 items waiting to be crossed off of my non-cooking to do list. Shoot.
If you’re looking for inspiration, here’s what I was up to:
Emerald Salad from Sprouted Kitchen made a huge dish of wholesome, relatively unadorned vegetables. We loved the recipe, and I also love the simple concept of combining different veggies together and complementing them with just a few flavors. I left out the cheese, but I bet it would add a delicious element. I don’t have a picture, but who needs mine when you have Sara and Hugh’s?!
Coconut Coffee Shake from Green Kitchen Stories was fantastic, like a frappuccino only far less guilt-inducing. The flavors complemented espresso perfectly. It was a lovely pairing.
Olive Oil Maple Granola from Orangette was delicious- crispy, crunchy, flavorful, substantial. It smelled amazing while baking too. Next time I am only going to let it go 40 minutes. I checked at 40 and let it go the last 5 because it didn’t look fully toasted and still felt soft, but this really crisps up as it cools, and it can take on a slightly burnt taste very quickly! I can see us making this regularly.
I couldn’t wait to try the Miso Sesame Winter Squash from 101cookbooks because the combination of miso, maple syrup, molasses, and sesame oil seemed so intriguing. But, to be 100% honest, I think this recipe was better on paper. It made for a great lunch served over rice and was filling and healthy, but it just didn’t have the complex, interesting flavor I was expecting. Nonetheless, I liked the tofu and squash together and the cooking technique, and I have my eye on the cookbook it was adapted from, The Inspired Vegan. It looks like a fresh, inventive take on plant-based eating.
Frozen Banana Bites from (never home)maker were simple and tasty, perfect for when you are craving just a little something sweet. I like that they stay in the freezer, out of sight but handy if you need them. I would advise making a big batch of these as long as you are going to the trouble. I think you’ll be glad you did.
Banana Oat Chocolate Chip Smoothie from Peas and Thank You was good, but I left out the pretzels and added spinach, so it didn’t have the unique flavor punch I was after. It was my first experience with oats in a smoothie though, which seems like a great idea. And of course you can’t go wrong with banana and chocolate. Next time I may just use less milk, or maybe add some nuts to replace the pretzels. Mama Pea sure has a knack for creating unique, appealing smoothies.
Amaranth Clusters from Whole Living have great potential, but haven’t been a hit for me… yet. David liked them though! I used millet instead of amaranth, and tried to use flaxseed mixed with warm water instead of eggs, but I had to add more honey to make the clusters stick together. I will probably revisit this, but at this moment I would probably be embarrassed to serve them to you if you came over to my house. :)