New Year. Endless Possibilities.

Happy 2016 Friend!

Let me start by saying your coconut curry swoodles look SO! good. I can’t wait to try them. I’m glad your holidays went well! Sounds like Jo has a few tricks up her sleeve and that torch sounds so fun! Did you make Crème brulee?  It always amazes me during the holidays where food pops up. Every year we say we’re going to do things different, cut back, make it healthy, yadda yadda but I think we end up with more and more delicious food with less and less willpower to pass.

We went to VT for Christmas Eve, and spent time with my family and played horseshoes Christmas morning—because we could! And we hosted our first big family meal. Nick’s fam came down for a night of food, drinks and presents. For dinner, I made pork tenderloin in a peach wine sauce—a family favorite from many moons ago. It was a big hit and I was able to make a version for myself that was equally delicious! I’ll share it at a later post!

This year, I asked for a food processor for Christmas. I’ve come across so many great recipes in my Pinterest-quest that use a FP that not having one is becoming more of a burden. I can grate, dice, chop, puree, blend, whatever with the other tools I have but I end up with a dish that isn’t exactly how I pictured it and a mound of dishes to wash. (I need to use less dishes when I cook too—I think that’s just a sign of a good cook and a well-stocked kitchen, at least that’s what I’m going to tell myself…also, I hate dishes, one of my resolutions is to do dishes more quickly after I make something). I took it out of the box last night for the first spin around the block and I am in love! It has attachments to slice and shred which will save so much time and the tips of my fingers from getting too close to the box grater.

Nick stumbled across a new sandwich shop on a quest to Chipotle. Clover is a local shop that serves only vegetarian foods from local sources, so the menu is constantly changing. When we met up after his discovery he told me that he had had the best sandwich he had ever had and I had to try it—a falafel pita with cabbage and tzatziki sauce. Unfortunately he didn’t save me any, and I wasn’t hungry to go buy a whole sandwich to myself.  I did get to try some of his Rosemary fries (Ok, maybe I was a little hungry) and they were delicious! That was the inspiration for last night’s dinner, Zucchini-Chickpea Sandwich!

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The Verdict: The taste was perfect, a little kick from the jalapeno but also very light thanks to the zucchini. This has been the closest thing to a big burger I’ve had since cutting out meat. Unfortunately, these little guys did not stay together under pressure and ended up more with zucchini-chickpea mush. I followed the directions for baking, but when I took the patties out to flip, they were still soft.  I tried to quick fry them to add a nice crunch on the outside and that did not work either. I think if egg were added to the chickpea/zucchini mixture, it may hold together a little better and help it crisp up. I tried adding carrots to the Sammy to make up for the missing texture, but they had been shredded too thin and didn’t live up to expectation. I ended up eating mine like an open face sandwich with a knife and fork. Overall I think the sandwich was very good and just needs tweaking to be perfect. Next time I think I’d forgo the bulky roll and go to a flat bread or pita pocket…something lighter than a loaf of bread.

I love your goals for 2016! However, I think the “colorful language” is just another spice of the kitchen (and highly satisfying when the mood is right) 😉 I think my overall 2016 Food/Kitchen goal, aside from cleaning up after myself in a timelier fashion, is to create really good staple dishes. I’d like to make a solid curry dish, pizza dough, and lasagna. I’d also like to take a stab at making kombucha. I have a few other goals outside the kitchen too…it’s going to be a big year!

I’d also like to use the crockpot more—what are some of your fave crockpot recipes?

Stay Warm! && Happy Cooking!

Love, Kait

PS: I have a pasta roller, next time we come to visit I’ll bring it if you don’t have one yourself! Check a couple goals off the list at one time!

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