Monday, April 25, 2011

Bittersweet Chocolate and Pear Cake

Seasonal, quick, and easy. This cake is a great addition to any dinner party or potluck. Or, make it to enjoy at home. Rich chocolate, sweet pears, and nutty brown butter may seem like a flavor combination stretch, but it works in a marvelous way. And, if you add whipped cream to the picture, you're in for a good time my friends. A cake that defies several laws of physics, the batter starts underneath the chocolate and pears but gracefully rises through and engulfs the fruit and chocolate so that it becomes a cake filling rather than a topping. I think the baking time greatly depends on the pears you use which is why I gave such a large range in the instructions. Just keep checking the cake and it will set up eventually, it's definitely worth the wait.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Chickpea and Leek Soup

A spinoff of potato leek soup, the chickpeas used in place of potatoes boost the soup's fiber and protein content making it a great lunch meal that won't leave you starving at 3 pm. I think you'll find that it's just as tasty as potato leek soup though, especially since there's cheese to compliment the delicately flavored leeks. The soup freezes well which was good since this recipe produces a lot of soup. You can serve the soup multiple ways- blend the entire batch or leave a few chickpeas intact for texture. Heck, there's enough of this soup per batch that you could have it both ways!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Sautéed Wild Mushrooms with Angel Hair Pasta

As much of a budget or splurge meal that you wish it to be, this recipe adopts any combination of fresh mushrooms you can find or are willing to pay for. I combined crimini and oyster mushrooms in these blog pictures but you could use any mushrooms that look fresh and pocketbook friendly. Do try to use a few types of mushrooms to gain a larger scope of textures and flavors. Start the pasta water straight away as this is the longest step. Hand tear wild mushrooms like I did above- it's faster and looks more delicate. Win win!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Roasted Italian Turkey Meatballs

Food processors are great. Need to grate a ton of cheese? Bzzzzzzzzz. Done. Need to chop 4 onions? Bzzzzzzzzz. Done. Dips or hummus? Bzzzzzzzzz. Done. Puréed soup without your blender exploding all over your kitchen? Bzzzzzzzzz. Done. Hooray!

Anyway you get my point. This recipe can be made without a food processor, but using one makes finely chopping and grating the vegetables and herbs a quick task that can easily be done on a weeknight. I used a combination of dark turkey meat and turkey sausage to prevent the meatballs from being dry, which turkey can easily be, and to add more flavor. I served the meatballs with this tomato sauce which you can easily make while you make your meatballs. As far as herbs go, use a combination of what you have around or what looks good when you're at the store. Including cheese in the meat mixture creates a lovely golden brown, crunchy exterior on the meatballs after broiling.