Our crockpot came in a set of two, including this wee one which we used for our fondue night. We’re definitely blurring the line on what we meant when we made the list…but you know, with less than 5 hours to go, we’re going with it.
One of the reasons we put a fair amount of cooking and baking items on our list is because it’s a big stretch for us. I am just not into making food, and Adam says his cooking starts and ends with a BBQ. So, we thought this might be a pretty good challenge for us. Even more so, we realized once arriving at the Junction Farmer’s Market, that the selection wasn’t crazy huge for two people who aren’t proficient in the kitchen.
We got lettuce, purple runner beans, onion, garlic, beets, biscuits, peaches and cherries. We made roasted beets, salad with onions and beans with a garlic dijon dressing, with the biscuits on the side, and fruit for dessert. Maybe not the most creative meal, but it was tasty and we felt pretty good about it! Oh, and the market had a wine vendor, total score.
We have a fairly large collection of cookbooks; mostly of the vegetarian variety that I’ve collected over the years. They rarely, if ever, have been used, as I’m not much of a cook, and I find cookbooks intimidating. We decided this needed to stop, and on the list it went.
We hosted our parents for dinner over the weekend, and it seemed like as good a time as any to try some new recipes. We picked recipes from two cookbooks; It’s All Good by Gwyneth Paltrow and Vegetarian by Alice Hart.
From It’s All Good, we made a braised chicken with green olives and lemon, and charred corn with sage. From Vegetarian, we made an asparagus and barley salad with chive dressing. All were hits; easy to put together and everyone seemed to really enjoy them. Adam took care of the meat dish, and said he would make it again for sure. I did the two veggie dishes; the corn I would make every night, it was so easy and so delicious. The barley dish was great for vegetarians; with the barley and kidney beans, it was hearty enough to be a meal.
We also put together a pretty kickass cheese plate, and made a fruit salad for dessert with a mint & lime dressing, and vanilla whipped cream.
Details: Both cookbooks can be found at Indigo or Amazon. Regardless of your feelings for Gwyneth Paltrow, I think I would recommend It’s All Good over Vegetarian, simply because the recipes are simpler, but everything we’ve made is super delicious. The Vegetarian cookbook is definitely more elevated and intimidating.
I only learned how to poach eggs in the past year and it made me feel pretty bad ass in the kitchen. Hollandaise sauce however, was one of those things that seemed complicated and tricky to get right. Turns out it wasn’t that difficult (but crazy messy, I think I went through 5 or 6 dishes to make it). Delicious!
Details: We used this recipe for the hollandaise.
Eating fresh made bread is one of the life’s simple pleasures. When we were little, my Poppa (my Dad’s dad) would make bread on the weekends. It was delicious and special and knowing our Poppa made it for us made it even more special.
This was so easy and I felt so triumphant when it turned out successfully. The bread was a perfect addition to the breakfast we made for my Mum and brothers for Mother’s Day!
Details: We used this recipe from Frugal Living NW (found on Pinterest). We did the 3 cups whole wheat, 3 cups unbleached option, but left out the molasses (which in retrospect would have been delicious!). We cooked the bread in a 4.7L French oven (smaller than the recipe recommends, but seemed to work fine).