Feasting at Home

March 27, 2015

Toasted Coconut & Berry Trifles with Whipped Coconut Cream

Toasted Coconut and Fresh Berry Trifle with lemon pound cake and whipped coconut milk!| www.feastingathome.com
There is a thing I try to do before I fall asleep. As I lay my head on my pillow, I ask myself a question. What was the most beautiful thing about today? Of course some nights, I'm out before I can think of an answer, but I love doing this because it creates an opportunity to think about the day, and remember the few moments that made it shine.  I wish through the years, I would have written them down, for most have slipped now from my mind, but somehow the acknowledging, however brief, feels as if they soak deep into the soul, and perhaps, at the end of life, they will play back like a montage with some pretty song in the background. I am embarrassed to say, that a good many of these shining moments will be of me putting a fork in my mouth, tasting something delicious.

This simple dessert would for sure be on the list. Fresh juicy berries are layered with whipped coconut milk, lemon pound cake and toasted coconut flakes in a clear glass or mason jar. The combination of fresh berries, lemon, and coconut is divine. Refreshing and not overly sweet, this dessert really highlights this season's fresh berries, and the whipped coconut milk is an unexpected twist on an old classic --a light finish to a heavier dinner, like Easter.

March 23, 2015

Slow Cooker Turkey Mushroom Bolognese

This healthy, lightened up Bolognese Sauce is made with ground turkey instead of ground beef or pork, and instead of the traditional pancetta, I added mushrooms for flavor and depth.  Either make in a slow cooker, set on the lowest setting and cook low and slow for 6 hours, or alternatively, simmer on the stove for 1 hour if you prefer. There are a few secrets to getting flavor and depth into this sauce without adding the beef and pork, which is a good thing to learn, and can be used in many other applications as well. Make a big batch, perhaps even a double batch, and freeze in smaller portions for quick and easy dinners. Serve over pasta, fluffy quinoa ....or my favorite, over roasted spaghetti squash, keeping it gluten free.

Six Tips to adding depth to Turkey Bolognese:

1. Brown the onions
2. Brown the turkey 
3. When adding the tomato paste, make a well in the pan, and saute it in oil until it deepens in color, for 2 minutes, before mixing it in.
4. Add a little soy sauce ( or, as weird as it seems, a splash of fish sauce) 
5. Add a parmesan rind to the bolognese
6. Add browned mushrooms, or even dried mushrooms to the slow cooker.

Once the stove top work is done, place it in a slow cooker, on lowest setting for 5-6 hours.
Or alternatively, keep simmering on low on the stovetop for 1-2 hours.

March 20, 2015

Shaved Cauliflower and Spring Pea Salad w/ Yogurt and Mint

Shaved Cauliflower and Spring Pea Salad w/ Yogurt and Mint | www.feastingathome.com

There is so much to love about this crunchy refreshing Spring salad. For starters, fresh plump Spring peas, just lightly blanched. Shaved cauliflower, shaved Turkish cucumbers, shaved radishes, and lots of fresh mint and scallions, all tossed in a tangy lemony yogurt dressing. The salad can be made ahead and tastes great the next day, and surprisingly even the next.

March 13, 2015

Savory Cheddar Scones with Rye, Caraway & Caramelized Onions

  Smokey Cheddar Scones with Rye, Caraway & Caramelized Onions | www.feastingathome.com

Smokey, earthy, buttery and flaky, these "savory" scones made with rye flour, caraway seeds, caramelized onions and a little smoked cheddar are the perfect accompaniment to soups and stews-- that is, if you can stop yourself from eating them, before the soup is made. That was my problem. Caraway seeds, the focus of next week's "The Seasonal Kitchen", a food column they let me write in our local paper The Spokesman Review, have been playing heavily into many meals around here and this was one of my particular favorites. I hope you enjoy them as much as we have. 

March 8, 2015

Meyer Lemon Gimlet with Thyme Simple Syrup

Your heart and my heart are very, very old friends.

If you haven't noticed, there's been a little theme happening here the last couple weeks. Meyer lemons. This simple cocktail, is a little bit like "grown up lemonade". It's made with gin ( or vodka), fresh squeezed Meyer lemons and a thyme infused simple syrup. It has easily become one of my favorites.  Shake it up with ice, strain and serve it up in two glasses and enjoy it with a friend.
The thyme can easily be substituted with rosemary, basil or even sage. The gin, can be replaced with vodka.

March 3, 2015

Amaranth Cakes w/ Lentils, Kale & Chipotle Aioli

Amaranth Cakes w/ lentils, kale  and chipotle aioli - high protein meal, vegan & gluten free | www.feastingathome.com
It is in the nature of things to be drawn to the very experiences that will spoil our innocence, transform our lives, and give us necessary complexity and depth.
 Thomas Moore

These protein-packed cakes are made with an ancient gluten free grain called Amaranth. Lentils and kale give heft and nutrients, while the vegan chipotle aioli, drizzled over top, gives them a flavorful smoky spicy tangy boost of flavor. Not only are these healthy guys gluten free, they are also vegan and low in fat. They can also be baked, although I do prefer the crust that develops from searing in cast iron skillet on the stove. Serve with lime and cilantro and a fresh zesty Mexican style cabbage slaw or leafy green salad, and you have a healthy satisfying, protein rich meal.