• erin

    Dumplings with my family
    A recent graduate of The Culinary Institute of America, I found myself with no money, no kitchen equipment, and an exceptionally huge appetite. Ideas, improvisations, and yummy meal solutions were discovered in the kitchen of my very first apartment.
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    I've been getting a lot of requests and suggestions for the apartment kitchen. I LOVE these suggestions, keep them coming!

    If you have anything you'd like me to consider (recipes to develop, shortcuts for recipes, great ingredients, or even blog formatting), shoot me an email and let me know!


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Creamy Red Quinoa

I’ve loved quinoa since the first time I tasted it. I knew it was this super healthy whole grain sold only in health food stores (i.e. not exactly a reason to get super excited). But from first bite I was hooked. The texture is amazing – like tiny pieces of popcorn, and the flavor is perfect – slightly nutty but still mild enough to take on any flavors you add to it. I kept this dish simple by adding lots of garlic and onions and cooking it in chicken broth. Using broth instead of water makes incredibly buttery tasting grains. To give it a bit of creaminess, I added a little bit of Greek yogurt, which made it almost decadent. And in the spirit of the New Year, it couldn’t be more good for you. Yum yum.

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Roasted Cumin Carrots

The most beautiful carrots I have ever seen were part of my score from my last farmer’s market trip of the season. They were wonderful – a bit on the small side, since it has been getting bitterly cold already, but so flavorful it reminds you what carrots are supposed to taste like. Sweet and almost buttery and rich. This simple roast paired carrot with one it’s favorite spices: cumin. This is good as a simple side, tossed in a salad, or pureed into a silky dip that’s fantastic with pita bread.

Garlicky Stir Friend Brussels Sprouts with Soy and Szechuan Peppercorns

Matt loves brussels sprouts. I mean loves them. There have been times when it seems he likes them even more than (gasp!) meat. Ok, ok not as much as meat…but it’s close. And as much as I love Matt, I couldn’t bear to keep making brussels sprouts the same old way. So this creation, while not typical, was a welcome one at our dinner table last week.

Crispy, Salty Plantains

Plantains are a virtually perfect food in my book. They can be crisp or soft, sweet or salty, fried or grilled – and make an amazing and overall crowd pleasing side dish. Anytime Matt and I see them at our favorite market (which isn’t too often), we grab up an armful and cook them. But with plantains, as with many of my favorite foods, it’s best to keep it simple. I almost feel silly writing a recipe for it…but I figured it could be a guideline for those who’ve never cooked them at home! A little bit of oil, a pinch of salt, and a few minutes is all you need for a delicious snack.

Cauliflower Puree

Calling all carb lovers! If you have not discovered the glorious beauty of pureed vegetables, you mustn’t wait any longer! Peas, greens, and (my personal favorite) cauliflower will transform the way you think about vegetables and possibly replace old time favorites such as mashed potatoes. Don’t believe me? Well, let me just tell you that I am hooked. My pureed cauliflower was creamy and delicious and entirely fat free!

Now, don’t get me wrong, I tested a few alternative options (adding additional ingredients such as a little bit of butter, cream, yogurt, or parmesan cheese) but the plain thing was so so good. It went excellently with the comfort food I made the other night, and best of all – it is super easy! So what are you waiting for?