Would you believe me if I told you I took over 100 photos of these vegetables before and after cooking? First, so I could believe myself it actually fit in the dish and second, because well I’m still learning about my camera… Practice takes perfect right!
It’s a typical Saturday night in our house. After I destroyed the kitchen making yet a very simple Quiche, I left it to eat and play with Calla. Then continued to watch her pull every toy, book and stuffed animal out into the living room and then moved back into the kitchen the create another mess of the floor. We had some bedtime snacks then got Calla ready for bed. The house is now quiet with a sleeping dog, sleeping baby and even a sleeping husband, and still a mess surrounds me.
Yesterday I found a pretty great article on How to Stay Organized in the Kitchen while baking and Cooking, which I vowed I would follow. Very easy tasks that would make a world of different at the end of the night, however, I seemed to have forgotten to put them into play tonight… oops.
With the goal being how long I can forget about my kitchen, living room, laundry and mess of a house. I’ve decide to take a little internet break and turned to Pinterest (It’s just a small obsession). The problem is there’s so many great things to look at and check out I feel I might miss something if I don’t check it at least once a day. After that I managed to send some photos to my mom, look up ideas for Mason Jars, watch a couple Jenna Marbles videos (have you seen any, they are pretty funny), drool over all the beautiful items on Anthropologie, kitchen wear being my cup of tea, go back to Pinterest, then finally decide to write this little blog post. Have I mentioned I’m great at Procrastinating? You may have picked up on that.
Do you think maybe if I wait long enough, or think about it hard enough it will learn to self-clean? My oven knows how, maybe it can teach the whole kitchen??
Or, maybe not.
Alright, the salad. This is a pretty great salad. So great I had it for lunch, dinner, then removed a few ingredients, threw an egg on top and had it for breakfast the next day. To eat Kale, I feel like you really have to know what to do with it. That being said I think it’s all in how you prepare it. First, cut the tough large ribs out, even slice it into smaller pieces so it’s more manageable. Season it with lemon juice, olive oil, some spices and some salt and pepper and that’s a good start. Otherwise, despite the fact that it’s so good for you, it will still taste bitter, chewy and unenjoyable to eat. So far I’ve tried Kale chips, in this burger, in this soup, in smoothies and I think the next might just be a ceaser salad, in lieu of Romaine. Could be a winner. Hmmm… I wonder how that self-cleaning kitchen is doing…
Alright, to the kitchen…
Kale & Sweet Potato Salad
1 Cup cubed Sweet Potato (or more if you like)
2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
1 Bunch Kale, ribs removed and finely sliced (about 2 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup raw almonds, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
1 tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
Heat oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Toss the sweet potato in olive oil, just enough to coat. Season with Salt and Pepper. Spread onto prepared baking sheet and place in heated oven. Roast until tender and caramelized, about 40 minutes, tossing every 10 minutes or so. Toast almonds in the same oven for about 10 minutes, tossing once or twice. Remove from oven and let cool.
In a large mixing bowl, toss together the kale, almonds, parmesan cheese and sweet potato. Add lemon juice and olive oil. Mix together then taste for seasoning. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, if needed. Serve with lemon wedge and extra parmesan cheese.
If there’s any salad leftover, remove almonds and bake an egg on top (recipe below).
Kale, Sweet Potato & Eggs
1 – 2 Eggs
Kale and Sweet Potato salad (recipe above), minus the almonds.
1 tbsp Olive Oil
Heat olive oil in a medium size skillet over medium heat. Add about 1-2 cups of salad to pan and allow to cook a few minutes until Kale starts to soften.
Bring salad together and crack 1-2 eggs over top. Reduce heat to low, cover and let cook 5-7 minutes. Or until eggs are cooked, but still soft on the inside. Allow to cook longer if you like harder eggs.
Remove from heat, transfer to plate and enjoy with multigrain toast.
(The Initial Salad adapted from Food 52)
Over the last two weeks, our Wednesday night meals have been falling short.
Crab cakes falling apart, pork tenderloin with little flavor, needless to say I was disappointed.
I tend to take it quite personally when recipes and meals don’t turn out, and when they do turn out, well, I feel like I need to share them with everyone I know.
With our past failures, I was particularly keen on making this Wednesday night meal a success and was beaming with happiness when this proved to be one.
The 3 components of these pitas work together beautifully.
Softening the Kale in a jalapeno-lime marinade adapted from this site, takes the bitterness out of the kale, and has become my favorite way of eating kale and a firm believer that this chewy green vegetable can actually taste incredible.
Topping the burgers with a creamy cilantro-cucumber yogurt is the simplest and most fitting sauce.
Stuff those ingredients in a fresh, warm, homemade pita is absolute perfection.
1/2 Large Cucumber, juliened
1 Cup Plain Yogurt
1/4 Cup Cilantro, chopped
Line juliened cucumber on paper towel and sprinkle with salt. Allow to sit for 15-20 minutes to remove moisture. In a small bowl, mix together yogurt, cucumber and cilantro. Set aside.
Jalapeno-Lime Kale (adapted from Not Without Salt)
1 Bunch Kale, thick steams removed and chopped
1/4 cup Fresh lime juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 Jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped (unless you like spice, keep the seeds)
1/4 cup Cilantro, chopped
1/4 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp ground cumin
In a medium bowl, add chopped kale, lime juice, olive oil, jalapeno, cilantro, salt and cumin. Mix together, with you hands if you like, and set aside for 30 minutes.
1 19oz Can Chickpeas, drained & rinsed
2 tbsp Sesame Oil
1 Lime, Zested & Juiced
1 tbsp Fish Sauce
1 tbsp Soy sauce
1/2 tsp Sambal Oelek Hot Chili Paste
1/2 Large Yellow Onion, diced
3 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 Cup Panko Breadcrumbs
In a small saucepan, heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium high heat. Add diced onion and minced garlic, and cook for a few minutes until they brown. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a blender or food processor, add chickpeas, sesame oil, lime juice and zest, fish sauce, soy sauce, Chili paste and breadcrumbs. Pulse until combined, but not smooth. Add garlic and onion and pulse a few more times.
Form into patties, should make about 7 small ones. In a medium saucepan, heat 2 tbsp olive oil on medium high heat. Add chickpea patties and cook about 4-5 minutes per side, or until browned. You may need to cook in 2 batches.
Half Whole-Wheat Pitas (adapted from The New Moosewood Cookbook)
1 Cup Water, at room temperature
1 1/2 tsp Active Dry Yeast
1 Tbsp Honey
1 tsp Salt
1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
About 2 cups All-Purpose Flour
Extra Flour for rolling
Olive oil for bowl and baking sheet
In a medium-sized bowl, add water and sprinkle in yeast. Let stand for 5-10 minutes, until it starts to foam.
Add honey and salt and stir until everything dissolves.
One cup at a time, whisk in flour. Once it thickens, use a wooden spoon to mix. Once you cannot mix with the spoon, mix together with your hands. Turn onto a floured surface and knead dough until smooth. Place dough in an oiled bowl, and oil the top surface of the dough ball. Cover with a tea towel and let sit for about an hour or until doubled in bulk.
Punch down dough and turn onto floured surface. Knead for about 5 minutes, then divide into 6 pieces. 12 if you prefer smaller pitas. Using your hands, form each piece into a smooth ball. Then flatten with a rolling pin into a very thin circle, no thicker than 1/8 inch. (the circle does not need to be perfectly round). Let circles rest about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 500F. Place baking sheets in oven for a minutes or two to warm. Brush sheets with olive oil. Place pitas on sheets, making sure circles don’t touch. Bake for 6-8 minutes or until puffed up and lightly browned. Remove from oven and wrap in a damp tea towel.