Friday, April 14, 2017

L is for....Leon's Lunchbox

This cookbook is just a small little cookbook with some fast recipes, designed to for a healthy lunch time.  Today I took time to make some gazpacho.  It was super easy and used up some ingredients that I needed to use up anyways....and it got me lots of healthy veggies.

Gathered up the ingredients -- had most everything I needed,
though it did ask for a green pepper, I had a red pepper that
was in desperate need of being used.  I also was missing
the white wine vinegar, so I opted for seasoned rice vinegar instead.

My yummy bowl of gazpacho, which I garnished with slivers of
basil leaf.

One thing to note though....I only had one garlic bulb left on my counter....forgot it was Georgian gazpacho had a bit of a kick.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

K is for....Kidron Mennonite's Fall Favorites Cookbook

It is a beautiful morning in my little valley and this morning I got to enjoy it on a walk with Vanilla Bean....well sort of.  Last evening, both of us had just finished an evening run when I called her to check who was taking care of our post today (she has been good enough to pick up some slack that I created the last couple days - I had told her I was taking care of I.....).   However, we got sidetracked in our conversation and in the end scheduled a morning walk together via cell phone.  And we actually managed to do it.  I don't know if I would have talked myself into a walk this morning if I was "meeting" up with her.

The site of my morning walk.

It was a bit nippy, but what a joy.  And how can one celebrate a beautiful morning, a brisk walk, and time with one's sister -- a delicious Morning Orange Drink.

This is a cookbook I have no idea how I acquired....well, I think I know how I got it...but a key character in my recollections is confident she never had this cookbook, so I don't know how I got it...perhaps I stole it and I apologize if I did but you may have to pry it from my hands now as I don't really desire to give it up.  A month or so ago, I realized there were several smoothie type recipes in this cookbook and I was eager to try one, but had never gotten around to it and today was the perfect day.  And it was delicious.  I think I am going to have to make this a recurring event.  Blessings, have a good day.
I even enjoyed my Morning Orange Drink on the porch.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

J is for....Joy of Cream Cheese Substitutes

Okay, I confess, that title was really bad. Alas, none of my cookbooks start with J!

So instead I decided to make two versions of cream cheese substitute for those who can eat dairy but can't eat all the assorted additives.

The first is easiest for everyday use. Say on bagels!  or in the dressing of cold sandwich salad. Simply take your favorite yogurt, drop it in a coffee filter/, and let it drain overnight in the fridge.  I use a 6 % plain yogurt from Snowville Creamery.

Take two is a new try from a cookbook of my sister's The Home Creamery.  It suggests making your own buttermilk (2 c milk, 2T vinegar, let sit 15 minutes) and  then heating/wait 2 hours/draining that for a Buttermilk Cheese that can be substituted in cooking for cream cheese. Say making a cheesecake.

One thing that surprised me in the making of this one, was that it formed a sort of melted cheese mass at the bottom of my pot when I was heating this. Not sure if it was supposed to do this....

And now in the morning, I can see that it has a more grainy ricotta look to it. May have not gotten some part of following  this recipe quite right. Oh well, still tasty results!

yogurt "cream cheese"                    buttermilk "cream cheese"

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

I is for...Ideals Around the World Cookbook

Doesn't this cover make you feel like you've stepped into an Italian kitchen half a world away?

This cookbook brings back memories.  One thing I am very grateful for is all the diverse international foods I was exposed to in my childhood before all the food allergy/sensitivity biz kicked in, and this book was one of several Mom used with us in making the homemade variety of foods.

For tonight's midnight snack/slash lunch tomorrow, I went for the Mexican Open Face Sandwiches. I happened to skip a sauce tonight, but  replacing the tomato sauce with butternut squash sauce is a good alternative for this and for pizza if you can't have tomatoes.

Monday, April 10, 2017

H is for ....Happy Salads

Today you get to meet one of my favorite cookbooks.  It has made the Travelling Spoons blog before, just not during April.  I met "Leon" not the actual Leon but the restaurant one day as I was strolling around London and needed to find a place to have lunch.  I had a delicious meal and loved the atmosphere and was instantly drawn to the many cookbooks they had for sale.  This day I was able to overcome my impulse to buy one...mostly because of the thought of carrying a heavy cookbook around for the rest of the day.  Well, I bought one when I got home off of amazon....and later I bought some more....   The most recent one of I have acquired is called "Happy Salads".  It is an inspiration to eat more salad, I initially saw it and wanted to buy it for a birthday gift for my good friends birthday, because she makes the best salads, but couldn't resist getting one for myself also.

Every salad I have made out of it so far has met approval.  In an early post - the "B" post, I served a salad with our Pizza-in-a-Burger and it just happened that that salad was from this book also.  Today I am going to share with you Leon's Mexican Salad.

First I lightly fried my peppers in my cast iron skillet - they were to be grilled
but I wasn't looking to grill today, so this worked. 

And it was to be grilled corn on the cob...which would have been fabulous,
but it is not the right time of the year for that.

Chorizo, looks like one is being stole, before it made it to the salad...
Mix that all up together with halved tomatoes.
Slice the peppers before adding them.
Cut up corn tortillas and crisp them up for 10 minutes in the oven.

Toss the dressing over the veggies and mix.

Place the greens in a bowl and then top with the veggies and gently fold together.
After that garnish with tortilla straws.
If it is a beautiful day like we had, eat outside.