Sunday, October 30, 2011

Apple Yogurt Salad

Louise over at Months of Edible Celebrations has one of the most entertaining food blogs around.  Every post, she culls through old cookbooks, researches food holidays, tells her readers about historical events and magically connects them to food.  If you've never stopped in for a visit, you must go, and soon.  You are in for a treat.

When Louise posted her challenge earlier this month -- to try out a recipe from a cookbook you own that corresponds with one of the October food holidays she spotlighted on her blog -- I knew I had to give it a go. 

We've got an apple tree
and I happen to have a few cookbooks  . . . and October, according to Louise, is Apple Month. 

So just in under the October wire, here is my apple contribution.  Not the grated apple pie I made, not the baked apples with custard sauce, not the applesauce or apple and cheese platters -- though they were all yummy.  But the recipe I'd like to share for Louise's cookbook party is this humble apple yogurt salad.  It's easy, tasty, and healthy, passing my test for a recipe that's a keepr.
Taken from this book, one in my collection that I really ought to use more, this delightful little dish serves 6, at about 100 calories apiece.


1/4 c. walnuts, chopped
2/3 c. plain yogurt
1 T. lemon juice
1/4 t. ground cinnamon
1 T. honey
2 large apples, peeled and thinly sliced

Toast the walnuts at 350 degrees until lightly browned -- 5 minutes or so.  Stir together yogurt, lemon juice, cinnamon, and honey.  Toss sliced apples with yogurt mixture and serve on lettuce leaves.  Sprinkle with walnuts.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Chocolate Goodness without Excess Guilt

I've gotta admit, some recipes I try without a lot of hope that they'll actually taste good.  You know the ones I mean.  Filled with sneaky little pulverized vegetables.  Low-fat.  Bran.

With low expectations is exactly how I approached this recipe -- a whole wheat brownie made with more than a cup of applesauce.  Healthy-ish, for a brownie.  But probably not a brownie you'd make again with any enthusiasm.

Well.  Can I just say here I was wrong.

This little beauty, from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food magazine, certainly surprised me.  It's moist.  Fudgy.  Even crowned with a handful of chocolate chips.  Two hundred calories for a square like this one.  Just 100 calories if you cut it in half. 

But then, of course, you'd have to eat two.

If you're looking for a nice little October brownie to have with your cup of hot tea, look no further.  Whole-wheat brownies, Martha's way.  It's a good thing.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Homemaking in the Fall

Turns out sometimes you're too busy being productive at home to actually blog about being productive at home.  Like a squirrel gathering nuts, I have been nesting -- saying goodbye to the season past and preparing for the one to come.

There were the leaves collected and flattened and traced and turned into the cutest autumn towels ever.

There were the home-grown tomatoes, transformed into oniony/Parmesan-y tarts, soup for the freezer, dehydrated disks, and juice, glorious juice.

There were the apples made into chips, dehyrated snacks, and a nice little side dish doused with a citrus-y dressing of orange juice, lemon juice, and diced red onion.
There was the eggplant --  itty bitty ones, to be sure, but enough for a quiche and lovely cracker spread and a couple other dishes I forgot to photograph ;)

And finally, the peppers.  Are they not gorgeous?

This year, rather than making pickled peppers, I opted for lots of slivering for the freezer, and a wee bit o' roasting.

To roast, just cut them in half and remove core and seeds, put them in the oven on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil for 10 minutes or so, until quite blackened, then sweat them out in a sealed zippered plastic bag for 20 minutes before peeling.
A bit of work, I'm not gonna lie.  But in the end, the roasted peppers, pureed with a clove of garlic and a bit of olive oil, circled around a platter of lettuce, hard-boiled eggs, salami, and tomatoes -- probably the best meal of the season.
Happy fall.

NOTE:  Instructions for roasting peppers came from an old issue of Cooking Light magazine.  Salad idea with the roasted pepper puree came from another old magazine clipping -- maybe McCall's?  Not sure.

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