Monday, January 31, 2011

Rosemary Roasted Sweet Potato

You know those days when you get home from a particularly exhausting day at work, you're starving but you really don't feel like cooking a big meal?  On those days you just want something fast and easy. Something warm and yummy...simple and nourishing.  Lately, due to a recent sweet potato addiction, this has been my go to quick snack/small meal solution.

1 large sweet potato
1Tbsp melted butter (or olive oil)
1tsp chopped fresh rosemary*
Sea salt
White pepper

*if this amount of rosemary is too intense for you feel free to reduce it

Preheat oven to 400F. Chop sweet potato into bite sized pieces. Toss with melted butter and chopped Rosemary.  Make sure the sweet potatoes are evenly coated with the butter.  Spread the sweet potatoes in a single layer on a large flat baking sheet and sprinkle with a little sea salt and white pepper. Roast in preheated oven 15-20 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through and lightly browned to your liking.

These roasted sweet potatoes are wonderful fresh from the oven and make a great side dish for just about any meal.  The leftovers are equally yummy tossed into a salad the next day for lunch.

Over Christmas my sister-in law knowing of my sweet potato addiction brought me some fresh purple sweet potatoes.  I had never had purple ones before and was excited to try.  They were very good, less sweet that the orange variety in which I normally indulge and possessing a pleasant earthy flavour.  Unfortunately I don't have any photos so you'll just have to trust me when I say they were a beautiful shade of purple which deepened dramatically upon roasting. My teenage son refused to try them because he insisted they looked "evil".  I think he's been reading too many Stephen king novels.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Simply yummy gluten-free meatballs

I currently have a freezer full of some wonderful locally sourced ground meats; of the beef, lamb, pork, and turkey varieties.  Whenever I can't think of something new and exciting to make for dinner I thaw a pack of ground meat and whip up a batch of meatballs.  The seasoning will vary depending on what type of meat I'm using.  This is the version I made most recently.

Gluten-free meatballs: pork edition

1 lb ground pork
1.5 Tbsp chili powder 
1/2 Tbsp cumin
1 clove garlic minced
1Tbsp dried oregano
a pinch of salt

Combine all of the ingredients well.  Form into 16 meatballs. Cook in a covered skillet over medium heat until browned on one side.  Using tongs turn each meatball and cook uncovered until browned on the other side. Serve with dipping sauce below .

Quick dipping sauce

2 Tbsp plain Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp sour cream
2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

Combine in a small bowl and enjoy.

P.S These meatballs paired nicely with the comfy cauliflower.  I took the leftovers to work with me the next day to have for lunch.  Both the meatballs and cauliflower reheated very well.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Comfy Cauliflower

It’s like frozen tundra where I live.  Seriously it’s been freezing cold and snow covered for a while now. When it gets cold like this I start to crave comfort food…specifically macaroni and cheese.   However, being a person with an intolerance to gluten, mac and cheese is pretty much out of the question.  So I thought I would try to come up with a veggie based version of the dish to satisfy my cravings.  I used cauliflower in place of pasta and a little butter and cream in place of the traditional roux and milk.  This dish turned out really well and definitely hit the spot.

1 head cauliflower broken into bite sized florets
½ cup veggie stock
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp heavy cream
2 tsp dried thyme
1 clove garlic chopped
2 tbsp shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350°F. Using the veggie stock, steam the cauliflower until just fork tender.  Drain cauliflower and place in a 1.5 quart casserole.  In a small saucepan over medium heat melt butter.  Add garlic and thyme and sauté until fragrant.  Add the heavy cream to the sauce pan and swirl until it starts to bubble.  Remove from heat .  Pour the butter mixture over the steamed cauliflower and toss to coat evenly.  Top the cauliflower mixture with  sharp cheddar and bake at 350°F until the cheese is melted and browned to your liking (this should take 15-30 minutes depending on how brown you like it).

Sunday, January 23, 2011

…and don’t eat the bay leaf!

My husband has a potato addiction problem.  I mean the man craves potatoes in all shapes and forms constantly.  So lately in order to feed his potato craving I have been whipping up this super easy potato soup.  This recipe is quick and reheats wonderfully.  It is also gluten free.  Thickness in this soup is achieved by smashing (or pureeing) some of the potatoes negating the need for flour.

Easy potato soup
Makes about 6 cups
4 large russet potatoes, chopped into bite sized pieces
2 tbsp butter or olive oil
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 tbsp dried oregano
2 tsp dried thyme
2 bay leaves
3 cups vegetable stock
2 tbsp heavy cream (optional)
Ground white pepper

In a large stock pot over medium heat sauté the onion and garlic in the butter  until the onions are soft and the garlic begins to brown.  Add the oregano and thyme stirring until fragrant (about 1 minute).  Add chopped potatoes, bay leaves, and vegetable stock.  Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer until the potatoes are easily pierced by a fork.   Using the bottom of a drinking glass smash about half of the potatoes (alternatively this can be done with an emersion blender).  Add the heavy cream (if using) and stir.  Season with white pepper and enjoy.  Oh and if you make this for your husband you may want to remove the bay leaves before he tries to eat one J

(is it just me or does the word “potato” look really weird?)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


So I've decided to start a blog.  At the ripe old age of 35 I've started to remember less and thought this would be a good way to keep up with myself...remember the bits of life that seem to past by in a flash.  Now I'm notoriously bad at keeping a journal so we'll just have to see how this goes.  Anyway, welcome to my space.  I plan to write about the things I enjoy in life such as family, food, gardening, and pottery.  The name for this space came from a song I've been obsessed with lately called "Beluga" by Lady Lamb the Beekeeper. Go on now and listen to it...this girl is amazing!