Broccoli and Cauliflower Soup

I’ve been on a pretty big soup kick these last few weeks, and I realized that it might be worth expanding my soup repertoire beyond lentil or carrot and ginger. So I got some broccoli and threw some other things in the pot. Not bad for a first try! I might just add some more salt next time. Here’s what I did:

  1. Heat a tablespoon-ish of olive boil in a big pot over medium heat, and add chopped onions and garlic. Once the onions and garlic start to have that wonderful smell they get when they’re starting to cook, add the celery and some salt and pepper.
  2. Once the celery starts to soften, cube the potatoes and add them to the pot.
  3. Once the potatoes start to soften around the edges, chop up and add a head of broccoli and cauliflower each. I just chopped everything up — crowns, stems, and all (not the cauliflower leaves, though!) and tossed ’em in.
  4. Cook for a few minutes, till the broccoli starts to get a little more green the way it does.
  5. Add 4 cups or so of chicken stock — enough to almost cover the contents of the pot, and add a bay leaf or two.
  6. Bring to a boil, stir frequently, and let simmer for 2 hours, or until contents of the pot have cooked down.
  7. You can boil, food process, emulsify, or mash this soup to serve. I’m cuisinart-less these days, so have taken to mashing and serving up thick, hearty soups. I rather like them this way.
  8. Add salt to taste.

Ingredients: broccoli, cauliflower (one of each), 2 medium-large potatoes, 3-4 stalks celery, 3 cloves garlic, olive oil, chicken stock, bay leaves, salt, pepper

I served this soup for lunch today, which I garnished with jalapeño and a dollop of goat cheese and shared with a friend. (Yesterday I tried it with some Greek yogurt and cheddar…you might also try a little bacon and avocado. Yum!)

soup

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Veggie Bliss

This post reveals exactly why I started this blog: sometimes I eat the most random stuff (especially when I’m running out of groceries), and I want to be able to remember the concoctions when they work! I didn’t get a picture until I was almost finished, as I wasn’t convinced it would be a winner, so my apologies for the somewhat messy plating (or lack thereof). Here’s what I did: sautéed some minced garlic and onion in olive oil, added leaves of kale, quarter wheels of zucchini, and shredded brussells sprouts (in that order), and cooked until the kale started to brown. I added a drizzle of rice vinegar, small handful of cilantro, and a few halved (raw, unsalted) almonds at the end and cooked for another thirty seconds. I also added some crumbled feta on top to serve. It was shockingly flavorful, and I will definitely be using it as a veggie side in the future.

Gluten-Free Pasta Salad

Warm weather never fails to make me think of pasta salad — a staple for anyone who grew up with (even a little) traditional Italian cooking, and an absolute no-no for anyone with a wheat or gluten allergy or intolerance.

Many years ago now, when I worked at a pizza and pasta shop, I learned a recipe that basically calls for boiling some pasta, adding whatever fresh veggies you’d like (they can be blanched or raw, depending on the consistency you’re going for), topping it off with your favorite vinaigrette, and serving.

For this one, I used gluten-free quinoa elbows, and added:

  • red pepper slices
  • zucchini and yellow squash matchsticks
  • kalamata olives (I halved them)
  • red onion (sliced thin)
  • minced jalapeno and a dash of goat cheese on top for flavor

I made a rice-vinegar dressing by combining some olive oil, lemon juice, rice vinegar, basil, oregano, parsley, and minced garlic in a jar and giving it a good shake.

Warm Eggs and Kale

I’m pretty sure I’ve posted some iteration of this before, but just in case: warm kale + eggs = major yum factor.

To prepare the kale, add a little olive oil to a warming pan, wash the kale thoroughly, and break it apart in bite-size pieces right into the pan. Saute and add a pinch each of cracked pepper and sea salt (cover if you’re in a rush).

To prepare the eggs, do that stove-top-poaching-thing I feel like I’m always talking about: set out as if to fry the eggs, don’t break the yolks, add a little water, and cover. Cook till eggs are desired consistency (I like my yolk to run a little for this — there’s not really anything like the perfect bite of warm kale and just-right-runny egg yolk).

Eat this for any meal of the day. I’m currently eating it, and am in heaven (the red stuff on top is leftover pickled onion from takeout the other night).

Labor Day Food Fete

Labor Day is always full of endless good food, and this year was no exception. Katie and I arrived at her parents’ house on the Cape on Friday night, and per usual, she cooked an incredible feast for us. I would end up contributing to the festivities later in the weekend (to come in a later post), but that first night was all her. We had roasted potatoes, baked asparagus, and the most tender New York strip steak I’ve had in a long while.

LD 1

The next day, I turned the leftovers into a yummy summer salad by adding some greens, radish, tomato, and horseradish sauce. delicious.

LD 2

Lunch and a Barbecue

I haven’t posted for a while — between traveling and a spill on my bike, things have been a bit hectic. I spent a few days out on Fire Island last week with a friend of mine, and we used leftover taco filling from dinner the night before (ground beef, red onions, peppers, and tomatoes) to make quesadillas for lunch. We added mixed greens and threw some parmesan on top.

lunch

Last night, I went to a friend’s barbecue, and this is just a sampling of what we ate. Per the usual, it was positively scrumptious.

grill

Chicken Salad Sandwich

I just bid the beach farewell. SIGH. But before I left, I used leftover lemon chicken to make some chicken salad. I added some red onion, the rest of the funny jalapeno I used in the broccoli sauté the other night, mayo, salt, pepper, and a splash of apple cider vinegar. Threw it on some millet bread with two tomato slices and some mixed greens, and voilà.

chicken salad samy