A few lessons from the Christmas Kitchen….

I love that for every family gathering I’m tasked with bringing the veggies.  Really, I love veggies and I love finding new and delicious dishes.  For my birthday this year my hubby and my Mom got me foodie books – The Food Lab and Plenty More.  I read cookbooks like most people read novels and you can find them on my bed side table.

Plenty More is all about vegetable dishes and I wanted to try out a couple of recipes for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with my in laws.  Picking the recipes, one cooked, one raw, shopping at the local international market for the long list of ingredients and blocking out an entire afternoon to prepare it all – actually sounds fun to me.  To be honest, I only thought it would take an hour, max….not 4.  This was WAY more prep than even I was expecting.  In the end I had a TON…took it to the dinners…and came home with a TON. The dishes were wack, weird.  Way too many different  flavors – shaved asparagus, curry leaves, watercress.

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Looked pretty, and tasted great…but only a veggie loving foodie would be brave enough to tackle all those textures and flavors in one bite.

Lucky for me, my in laws didn’t kick me out after a couple of over-ambitious dishes.  They invited us back for New Years Day and asked me to bring veg.  K.I.S.S. (Keep. It. Simple. Stupid.)

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Simply roasted asparagus, mushrooms, green beans and Brussels sprouts.  Green salad and home made roasted red pepper vinaigrette.  Done is less than 30, all ingredients were on hand – and came home with empty dishes.  K.I.S.S. is my resolution for 2017…unless you come to My House!

We were loving life the past few weeks with tons of after-Christmas family in town.  All this company meant lots of fun and grocery shopping.  Now that all our guests have gone home I have been attempting to (healthfully) live off freezer and pantry staples for as long as possible – I found a bag of organic Split Peas.  My kids love soups, especially when it’s cold out.  I had all the ingredients on hand plus some frozen organic broccoli in the freezer… (PSA: there is NO good way to prepare that stuff, don’t waste your $$.  ) that needed to go away.

A quick Google search and I found this recipe for Broccoli & Split Pea Soup, SCORE!  Swap out coconut milk for the cream and dinner is done from pantry and freezer!

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Smelled awesome, looks like – well, vomit.  But my kids were drawn in by the delicious smell and didn’t comment on the hue.  Successfully avoided the grocery store for one more day!

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