feasting at home

October 21, 2014

Rut-Busting Fall Recipes

This time of year, life moves at lighting speed.  It seems to be the nature of the season….a gradually revving up, building,  towards the holidays. Days become shorter and lists become longer. In the kitchen, when short on time and inspiration, it's all too easy to get in a rut.  And when we are struggling to get everything done in a day,  the last thing we want to think about is "what to make for dinner". So we just end up making the same old thing. At the grocery store, we fill our carts with the same stuff as last week--which is great, and satisfying, and fast, but can get boring and predictable. Sometimes it's good to mix things up a bit and inject a new ingredient, a new recipe or little spice into our days. It keeps things interesting, it keeps things exciting. So toward that end, here are a few of my favorite fall recipes that I hope will inspire you to try something new  and different this week. Click on the links for the step by step recipes. 

October 17, 2014

Roasted Butternut Tikka Masala

This aromatic, flavorful recipe for Roasted Butternut Tikka Masala is bursting with Indian flavors.  Traditionally, Tikka Masala, made with tandoori chicken, is bathed in creamy tomato curry sauce seasoned with garam masala. In this recipe, roasted butternut is added to the mix, a nod to fall, giving it a hint of sweetness while adding extra nutrients and fiber. For vegetarians or vegans, the chicken can easily be replaced with chickpeas, tofu or paneer, which I enjoy just as well, but today I've made it with chicken. Heavy cream is replaced with either plain Greek yogurt or coconut milk, making for a lighter meal without sacrificing the richness that the dish needs. Serve this over brown or basmati rice or with naan bread and enjoy the warming flavors. An added benefit to this dish, are the leftovers, which get even tastier as the ingredients have time to meld- perfect for weekday lunches during the week. 

October 15, 2014

Roasted Butternut with Black Garlic and Miso

Savory roasted butternut squash gets a little boost of flavor from fermented black garlic and miso paste. An easy fall side dish, this recipe is vegan and gluten free. Black garlic and miso infuse the roasted squash with deep umami flavor while giving it a slight, unexpected sweetness. Black garlic, contrary to how it looks, is surprisingly sweet, and the combination is both subtle and delicious.

October 9, 2014

Healthy Luscious Potato Leek Soup

There is something very satisfying about creating a comforting pot of soup from of a few simple seasonal ingredients. Fall potatoes and leeks come together in this classic pairing. To be honest, in the past I have tended to shy away from Potato Leek Soup, because of the many occasions when ordered, it arrived bland and lifeless. This version, I assure you, is not. It's rich and flavorful, all the while staying light and healthy. Served with crusty bread, it makes for a gratifying wholesome meal. 

October 4, 2014

Skillet Baked Steel Cut Oats w/ Maple Glazed Apples

A warm and hearty breakfast, Baked Steel Cut Oats with Apples and Maple is one that will stick to your ribs, without being too heavy - leaving you feeling energized and satisfied for hours. Steal cut oats are toasted in a skillet to bring out their nuttiness, along with the warming spices of cardamon, nutmeg and ginger. Flax seeds, toasted sesame seeds and pumpkin seeds add an earthy element, and a nice crunch, while seasonal apples and maple syrup add just the perfect amount of sweetness. The whole thing is placed in the oven to bake, the apples rising to the top, becoming perfectly caramelized. While it is baking, its lovely fall aroma wafts through the house, getting your appetite going.  I love the texture of these nutty chewy oats - toothsome and sprightly. Surprisingly, my bacon and eggs loving husband has even taken to these.

September 30, 2014

Enchilada Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

It is... what it is.
{said a very wise friend}

This recipe for Enchilada Stuffed Spaghetti Squash is packed full of healthy ingredients without compromising on flavor.  Spaghetti squash is cut crosswise, to create a round "bowl",  then roasted in the oven. It is filled with a mixture of fresh corn, black beans, cilantro, onion, garlic, jalapeƱo, red bell pepper and a savory "enchilada" sauce. It is hearty and satisfying without being overly heavy. If beans are not your thing, feel free to substitute lean ground meat, chicken or even cooked whole grains. These can be prepared vegan, sans cheese, like my version in the background below-- or, if you prefer,  "cheese-it-up" as my husband says (often), by adding shredded cheese into the mix.

September 27, 2014

Caprese Pizza with Oven Roasted Tomatoes

The last of summer tomatoes are roasted in the oven until caramelized and tender, becoming evermore flavorful and rich, a delicious topping for this lightened up version of Caprese Pizza with it's thin crust, fresh mozzarella and basil leaves. For an extra burst of flavor, the crust is brushed with a garlic, basil and olive oil paste -almost like pesto. Once the fragrant pizza comes out of the oven, it's drizzled with a balsamic syrup and topped with fresh basil leaves. Served with a fresh green salad, it's satisfying and delicious. The thin-crust dough, can be made ahead and refrigerated, or  for a quick weeknight meal use store bought pizza dough, rolled very thin.