December 5, 2011
One of my greatest joys in life is making vegetables taste good to other people. When someone is especially excited about a tasty piece of zucchini I made, I am a happy girl.
You’re already rolling your eyes I know, but stay with me.
Zucchini and carrot “fries” are my quiet specialty. They make a great snack or side to burgers and sandwiches. Where you would normally throw a side of fries/chips or a side salad, why not throw the best vegetables you’ve ever tasted instead? Zucchini and carrot fries are an excellent addition to a plate in both color and flavor. And I’m not even going to talk about the healthy part – we’re all smart people here.
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December 2, 2011
One of the best parts about Thanksgiving is the leftovers – leftover turkey (in my case chicken) for salads, soups and sandwiches, stuffing made into hash with a fried egg, cold roasted veggies – I love it all. But I always run into an issue with the leftover mashed potatoes. When made fresh they are fluffy, creamy clouds from heaven but once they hit the fridge, it’s all downhill.
So, what do you do when you’re left with a big mountain of potato that you just can’t bare to toss out?
Do the taters justice and make pierogies.
These traditional Polish dumplings are delicious when boiled or pan fried and served with a little sour cream or apple sauce. When you already have the mashed potatoes, making them is super simple. You can add cheese, sauerkraut, mushrooms or onions to your potatoes to spruce them up inside their little parcel.
You can also make your own dough if you’d like, but after cooking for two Thanksgivings in one week I was feeling a little lazy. I picked up some fresh lasagna sheets and cut them into rounds using a glass.
(Not perfect rounds, as you can see…)
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December 1, 2011
It’s turning out to be a week of firsts for me. Making my first pavlova, my first costumed Italian-themed Thanksgiving (maybe anyone’s first), and cooking my first roast chicken. We also hosted our first Friendsgiving – 6 days later than normal Thanksgiving, served on our coffee table, with some new friends – nice and casual but with all the tasty trimmings. Hopefully we’ve started a new tradition.
But let me back up to the Italian-themed dress-up Thanksgiving. (You’re intrigued, no?)
Mr. F’s family has been having their own Thanksgiving here in Australia for the past 5 years and this year they decided to kick things up a notch. Gone was the turkey, mashed potatoes and roasted veg – instead, we were treated to gorgeous antipasto platters, pizzas, fried eggplant, fish and rice balls. All topped off with tiramisu, amaretto mousse and pumpkin pie (I wiggled that one in there). To accompany this impressive spread there was Italian wine, beer, music, and mandatory costumes! We had dining partners ranging from Super Mario Brothers to Silvio Berlusconi and one of his mistresses (someone had to go there). It was a great night, with a lot to be thankful for.
But of course for l’americano – it was not quite Thanksgiving. I needed my mash, stuffing, sweet potato and more pumpkin pie. So we invited some friends around and I got to work.
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