Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Frittata with Brussels Sprouts

Frittata with Brussels Sprouts and sriracha garnish on plate, overhead view on black

A tasty fate for leftover veggies

What’s the best thing about big holiday meals (like Thanksgiving, for instance)? Leftovers, I’d say.

One of the best ways to use leftover veggies is to mix them into a frittata. If you don’t know frittatas, you should—they’re a baked egg mixture that you start on the stovetop (in a heatproof skillet), then finish in the oven. They resemble omelets, but are much easier to make for most people. They’re also exceptionally versatile—tasty when eaten hot, cold, or in between.

If you serve Brussels sprouts for Thanksgiving, chances are you’ll have some left over—because who loads up on veggies when the table is groaning with turkey and dressing? You probably wouldn’t think of eating those little cabbagettes for breakfast. But bake them into a frittata, and you could. Or just wait until lunch or dinner, because frittatas are perfect anytime.

In fact, this dish is so good, you may find yourself cooking Brussels sprouts more often. Just so you’ll have some on hand for your next frittata.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Spicy Roast Chickpeas

Spicy Roast Chickpeas in small ramekin with cocktail in background

A healthy vegan snack that’s tasty enough for meat lovers

With party season around the corner, it’s time to start searching for snacks and nibbles to serve. If you’re in the US, the first big holiday happens this Thursday: Thanksgiving.

So here’s a handy appetizer idea. These Spicy Roast Chickpeas (a/k/a garbanzo beans) make the perfect starter. Their zing helps stimulate appetites, but their low-fat profile keeps things light and healthy. 

They’re also easy to make. Which leaves you more time to wrestle with that turkey.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Sweet Potato Pie with Walnut Crust

Sweet Potato Pie with whipped cream garnish, on plate with serving dish in background

Better than pumpkin—really

What’s for dessert this Thanksgiving? Pie, of course—why even bother to ask? And pumpkin will be the pie of choice for most households throughout the US.

But how about an alternative that’s even tastier? That would be Sweet Potato Pie, a favorite in the American South. Sweet potatoes have deeper, richer flavor than pumpkin. And our gluten-free walnut crust is both tastier and easier to make than the traditional pastry shell.

So welcome to the best Thanksgiving dessert. Ever.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sweet Potato and Rosemary Casserole

Sweet Potato and Rosemary Casserole on plate, with fork and napkin in background

Parmesan and cayenne ramp up this savory side

Sweet potato casseroles rule at Thanksgiving. Which is no surprise—they’re festive looking and tasty. But when topped with marshmallows (as they so often are), they’re sweet enough to serve as dessert.

So how about a savory alternative? This casserole highlights the deep, rich flavor of sweet potatoes—while rosemary adds a herbal note, Parmesan cheese provides richness, and cayenne pepper gives it just a bit of a kick.

You can do most of the prep and assembly work for this dish ahead of time (even the night before), and then just pop it into the oven when ready to serve.

Which makes it one less thing to worry about on the big day. Works for me!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Hashed Brussels Sprouts

Hashed Brussels Sprouts on plate, with skillet serving dish in background

A make-ahead side dish that you can warm up and serve in minutes

Throughout much of the US, markets are loaded with Brussels sprouts right now. That’s because these little buds reach their peak when the weather turns chilly. Once they’ve been kissed by frost, their flavor seems brighter and their texture even crisper.

What to do with all this bounty? Make a hash of it, we say.

Hashed Brussels sprouts are easy to make, and their flavor can entice even the most cabbage-avoidant. Plus, you can do most of the prep work ahead of time, then quickly finish them right before serving. Perfect for a big, multi-dish dinner (like Thanksgiving, just to mention one example).

Still worried that some guests will balk at eating this much-maligned vegetable? Just tell them you’re serving a great new French veggie called choux de Bruxelles. They’ll eat it up.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Quick Corn Relish

Quick Corn Relish in ramekin with serving bowl, fork, and napkin in background

Jalapeño adds zip to this tangy side dish

Have a hankering for some old-fashioned corn relish? But forgot to preserve any fresh corn when it was in season? No problem. We’ve got you covered with this easy refrigerator corn relish.

This recipe uses frozen corn, which is generally high quality. It’s also available year round, so you can make this relish whenever the mood strikes. The entire process takes only a few minutes. And the flavor improves over time as the ingredients mingle, so you can mix it up days (or even weeks) before you plan to serve it.

The perfect make-ahead recipe for a big dinner, wouldn’t you say? It’s especially good when you have lots of other last-minute dishes to juggle. Like Thanksgiving, for instance.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Jack Rose Cocktail

Jack Rose Cocktail with lime slice garnish

Drinks authority David Embury called this one of his “six basic cocktails”

So who is this David Embury? And what is a “basic cocktail,” anyway?

Patience—all will be revealed in time. But first, we need to introduce this tasty delight.

The Jack Rose is made with applejack, a variety of apple brandy. Applejack goes back a long way—it was extremely popular in North America during colonial times, and was the first spirit to be licensed for commercial production in the United States.

This drink is simplicity itself to make. Pour a slug of applejack, add freshly squeezed lime juice (or lemon—your choice), splash in some grenadine (the real stuff, please), and mix with ice. The result? An appealingly tart drink with just the right balance of sweetness. Not to mention gorgeous color.

The Jack Rose is perfect for sharpening appetites before an autumn dinner. Especially that big dinner you may be planning for the 4th Thursday of November (you know, the one they call Thanksgiving).

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Hot Bacon Dressing

Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Hot Bacon Dressing on plate, overhead view on black

Served raw, this classic fall vegetable makes a mean salad

Planning to serve Brussels sprouts? Then you’re probably already headed for the stove, right?

But wait. These little choux taste great raw. Just slice them thinly (it brings out their natural flavor) and toss them in something tasty. Like hearty hot bacon dressing, we would suggest. It’s particularly nice if you’re experiencing cool fall weather, as many of us are now in the US.

And if you’re having trouble selling some diners in your household on the whole idea of Brussels sprouts—well, just wait until they taste them in this robust dressing. You may make some cabbage converts.