25 November 2009

Kitchen Happenings

With so many wonderful recipes hitting bookshelves and the blogosphere, it seems quite remarkable that people are still devising novel ways to cook up tasty eats.  There are so many delicious-sounding recipes floating around, in fact, that my list of "to-cook" dishes has long been too long for me to find the time and materials necessary to get through each item.  But in between cooking up the ever-familiar "go-to" meals and life beyond the kitchen, in the last week or so, I've found the means to try some new dishes, all of which were more or less as tasty as they looked or sounded when I first came across them.  Here are a few notables:

Sweet Potato Cake from VegNews.  I halved the recipe to achieve a single-layer cake, substituted sweet potato with roasted blue ballet squash--it has a similar texture and nutty flavor--used only cinnamon rather than the other spices, threw together a cinnamon icing, and topped that with sugared walnuts.  The cake was moist and sweet, but not overly so.
Celebration Pot Pie with Pumpkin Biscuit Crust from Fatfree Vegan Kitchen.  I halved the recipe and it still made enough to feed a few people.  I also had roasted and pureed acorn squash on hand rather than pumpkin for the biscuit topping.  It was warm, comforting, hearty, and very, very tasty.
Cauliflower "Risotto" from One Frugal Foodie.  I made no substitutions, although I eyeballed the amounts of onion and cauliflower, using a leftover hunk of the onion and an entire small- to medium-sized head of cauliflower.  This grain-free dish is remarkably reminiscient of the more familiar type made with arborio rice.  It was so delicious.  This is such an easy and creative way to cook cauliflower that I would never have thought of myself.
Butterless Avocado Brioche from Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.  As suggested by the recipe's author, I baked the loaf at a lower temperature than the original recipe states, for a slightly longer time.  I love the creativity that spawned this recipe, too.  Who would have thought that using avocado to replace eggs and butter could yield bread, of all things?  And the dough pre-bake is a lovely avocado green that is retained in the finished product.  Thick slices would make great French toast.
Obviously, there are many, many recipes out there worth trying!  I'll probably never make a serious dent in that "to-cook" list of mine, but I'll keep trying anyway, especially if the payoff is as delectable as it's been so far.

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