I mentioned this book briefly a couple of weeks ago, but after having it in our culinary library (aka on the kitchen counter) for a few weeks it really needed to be given a more proper endorsement. Last night, I looked in our fridge and pantry and I felt like one of those cartoon characters that looks in theirs and only finds a bean to split. Dinner was not looking promising and I didn’t have time before E.’s bedtime to get to a grocery store. I usually never let our pantry get this depleted but it was in ‘woes me’ condition. I had a head of cauliflower, E.’s whole milk, kale, garlic and not much else. Doesn’t sound like the making of anything delicious or satisfying, but I pulled out my ‘Food52 Genius Recipes’ found one for cauliflower steaks and got to work. The ‘genius’ in the recipes is the simplicity in both the ingredients and the actual prep time. The cauliflower steak ingredients were just cauliflower, pan seared than roasted, the ‘pizazz’ factor was the cauliflower puree that is made with the remaining florets boiled in water and whole milk with a little salt and pepper thrown in. Once they are tender you puree them in a blender or food processor and they inexplicably form something that tastes like rich, buttery mashed potatoes?! I could not believe my freakin’ taste buds, how is that even possible? I think I am going to try this again, without making the cauliflower steaks, just the puree, using less liquid to get an even more authentic mashed potato feel. As for dinner? A little side of sauteed kale with garlic and we had a delicious + satisfying dinner on the table. I think I should also mention we had ice cream sandwiches as well, you know to just round everything off.
This book is filled with crazy easy and delicious recipes. If you are not making Marcella Hazan’s tomato sauce on a regular basis you should be (another genius recipe), it’s just canned tomatoes, an onion sliced in half , butter and salt to taste, leave it on the stove for 45 minutes to simmer and you have probably one of the best pasta sauces you have ever made on your hands (and the easiest). If only I had an onion and canned tomatoes that would have been dinner, it’s always my stand by when we have ‘nothing in the fridge’. Bonus a lot of the recipes can be made toddler friendly (and still satisfy the grown ups), which is perfect because who wants to cook two dinners each night? Not me.
Although, this is not a vegan centric book or blog, there are loads of plant and grain based recipes. I am dying to try the braised lentils, I had no idea you could cook lentils like that! I think E. will approve, she has a thing for lentils and I have a thing for trying to expand her palate.
Are you familiar with Food52? Have you tried any of their recipes? If so, which ones have worked for you?
Miss Tristan B. is the co-creator of the world’s best + easiest product photography editing tool-Foto Rx | Shopkeeper’s Helper and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.