autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower
It’s the middle of fall, Thanksgiving is in a couple of weeks, we’d like to make a start on Christmas shopping, and most of us are trapped in one sort of a lockdown or other. But there is nothing to stop you going grocery shopping, and then honing your chef skills.
These recipes have a kind of mid-autumn, pre Thanksgiving flavour. In one case I would strongly recommend serving a decent sherry or Madeira to go along with the cake. In fact, why not treat yourself to a decent glass of something any way. You deserve it, and you probably won’t be driving to work today.
(BTW for new readers, and if you just don’t know, if you click on the highlighted recipe name you will go right to that dish on the chef’s own website.)
First up this week, from Half Baked harvest we have this delicious looking 4 Cheese Sage Pesto Florentine Lasagna. How great would this be to make ahead for your Thanksgiving parties? (NB. Women should be very careful of too much sage.)
4 Cheese Sage Pesto Florentine Lasagna
Another pasta dish from Diane at In Dianes Kitchen; a very warming Cheesy Chicken Noodle Casserole. (Noodles are pasta too.) This is a very easy dish, even most of my fellow single men could make, (and most single men cannot cook).
Cheesy Chicken Noodle Casserole
Now a really pretty midweek dinner from Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower; Honey Garlic Shrimp Farro Bowl with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette. And how fabulous to serve this if you have friends over for a pre or post Thanksgiving lunch.
Honey Garlic Shrimp Farro Bowl with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette
Tiffany from Creme de la Crumb has a very seasonal dish in this Candied Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole, (with marshmallows). Being English I’m not quite certain if this is an entree or a dessert. No doubt someone will enlighten me.
Candied Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole
Joy Wilson at Joy the Baker has come up with what has to be the longest recipe name ever, (and that’s saying something here), Dad’s Perfect Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free Sweet Potato Pie. You have got to make this just so you can tell your guests what it’s called.
Dad’s Perfect Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free Sweet Potato Pie
And finally for this week. As you would expect from Heather Christo we have an extremely pretty dish, this time a Pumpkin Pecan Coffee Cake, which is both vegan and gluten free. How brilliant for afternoon tea around thanksgiving, although I’d serve this with sherry and not tea.
Pumpkin Pecan Coffee Cake
if you have never tried a good Maderia wine, then you have no idea the heaven you’re missing out on
now that I’m in enforced lockdown I’ll be eating canned goods for another week
None of these following recipes are unhealthy canned goods.
First this week from Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats we have delicious Parsmesan Pistachio Pork Tenderloin.
Parmesan Pork Tenderloin
Now from Tiegha Gerard at Half Baked Harvest we have Skillet Chicken Broccoli Pot Pie with a Garlic Butter Phyllo Crust. That looks wonderful. Me I’m eating pie out of a can!
Skillet Chicken Broccoli Pot Pie with a Garlic Butter Phyllo Crust
From Diane at In Dianes Kitchen, how about these Asian Pork Meatballs ~ I wish.
Asian Pork Meatballs
Chungah at Damn Delicious gives us her Best Ever Beef Stew.
Best Ever Beef Stew
Amanda at Chez le Reve Francais has a wonderful recipe for her Quiche Lorraine with Shortcrust Pastry.
Quiche Lorraine with Shortcrust Pastry
And Finally for this week, Garlic and Herb Sweet Potato Nourish Bowl, from the Minimalist Baker. I would make this if I was allowed out to the store.
Garlic and Herb Sweet Potato Nourish Bowl
Marmaduke and I still have a little fresh food left
autumn, a time for rich hearty meals
What with everything that’s happening in the world, and now that fall is upon us, perhaps the time has come to ditch our lighter diets, and instead fill our plates with rich and hearty foods. And, let’s be honest, we could all do with some comfort food right now.
And, of course, autumn does mean apples. And, piles of leaves. And, Rose Hips. And Pumpkins.
Although, please wear a warm scarf.
With all that in mind, first for this Friday we have Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats, and her Cider Braised Pot Roast with Caramelized Onions and Cauliflower Rice. I don’t yet know what this tastes like, but it looks and sounds fabulous.
Cider Braised Pot Roast with Caramelized Onions and Cauliflower Rice
From Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest we have a Healthy Slow Cooker Chipotle Bean Chili. This is a healthy, hearty, vegetarian, comfort food meal. Switch the cheese and you can have it vegan, or add chicken for those who like that.
Healthy Slow Cooker Chipotle Bean Chili
Another chili recipe, this time from Country Living; Pumpkin Beef and Black Bean Chili. This is one of Country Living’s 60+ Best Pumpkin Recipes to Delight Your Family All Fall Long ~ a very good collection. Look no further for your pumpkin recipe ideas.
Pumpkin Beef and Black Bean Chili
Autumn is a time for soups and stews, and Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb has a copycat recipe for Olive Garden Chicken Gnocchi Soup. I don’t know what this is like at an Olive Garden, but it looks great here.
Olive Garden Chicken Gnocchi Soup
Corn and Potato Chowder
For Dessert, Diane offers us this Apple Pan Pie, which here we would call an apple crumble. Fabulous served with cream or even ice cream.
Apple Pan Pie
kids and dogs love fallen leaves
so do we young at heart
I like to see a man proud of the place he lives
It’s July this this weekend, an important holiday in the USA. I have no idea what traditional Independence Day food is in the USA, because, obviously we do not celebrate that here in England, So, I’ve chosen some nice healthy dishes for this weekend.
From Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest we have this melon basil burrata salad with crispy prosciutto. I really like the look of this dish
Melon Basil Burrata Salad with Crispy Prosciutto
Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb has this super recipe for cilantro lime marinated steak with corn salsa. Can’t get much more American than this.
Cilantro Lime Marinated Steak with Corn Salsa
From In Diane’s Kitchen we have this easy ginger soy glazed chicken. Ginger goes really well with chicken, and it’s so very good for you.
Ginger Soy Glazed Chicken
Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats has this fabulous looking collection of 25 recipes for July 4th. I have chosen to feature these smokey blood orange BBQ ribs with avocado butter greens. Enjoy
Smokey Blood Orange BBQ Ribs with Avocado Butter Greens
Grilled Leek Potato Salad
And, these charred shrimp, leek, and asparagus skewers. I happen to like leeks.
Charred Shrimp, Leek, and Asparagus Skewers
I wonder if anything will be open this July 4th
the basis of all happiness is good health
It’s all very well my trying to eat a very healthy Paleo diet, but face it, if the recipes are too difficult or too time consuming I’m just not going to make them. There is a limit to how much time a chap living alone is prepared to spend in the kitchen.
All of these recipes are healthy and easy, so enjoy.
First up this week, from Ali at Gimme Some Oven we have chicken and wild rice soup. May as well face it, it this viral epidemic gets worse we may all be glad of some chicken soup. This is real comfort food.
Chicken and Wild Rice Soup.
Next, from Joy The Baker we have a roasted lemon chicken soup. This looks and sounds fabulous. I’ll bet this is a great pick-me-up too,
Roasted Lemon Chicken Soup
From Well Plated by Erin there this great looking but deceptively easy salmon wellington, (although I would have called it salmon en croute). I’d serve this with roasted asparagus. What a fabulous and fabulously easy meal to serve for dinner, or for a dinner party
Another salmon dish, sheet pan chipotle salmon with cilantro lime special sauce, this one from Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest; . I like sheet pan cooking, a lot.
Sheet Pan Chipolte Salmon with Cilantro Lime Special Sauce
With St. Patricks day coming up what about trying this Irish Stout beef stew with herbed dumplings? This recipe is from Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats. (To be honest, St. Patricks day is a non-event in most of English England. And right now the last place I want to spend any time is in a crowded bar.)
Irish Stout Beef Stew
And finally for this week, from In Dianes Kitchen we have a really simple recipe idea for sugar snap peas and bacon. What a smashing side dish, or with rice it would make a good light lunch to take to work, perhaps.
Sugar Snap Peas and Bacon
even on his little boat, Marmaduke is quite the chef
our caveman ancestors didn’t have combine harvesters
My healthier living plan involves something like the Paleo diet, although not in a strict nor fashionable way. However, it does mean that there are some types of food that I’m not going to tuck into on a regular basis; dairy, eggs, and most especially wheat / grains and their products like bread, noodles, and pasta. (I love pasta.) However, my food guru tells me that long grain and wild rice as well as quinoa are good on even my pretty strict Paleo diet.
First up this week from Erin Clarke at Well Plated by Erin I’d like to show you this Korean beef bowl recipe. This looks super delicious, and I would serve it with long grain and wild rice.
Korean Beef Bowl
I am really going to make this blackened shrimp kale caesar salad next week. One of the things I like about this dish is that it’s complete with so few ingredients. You can usually rely on Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats to have some very healthy, tasty, yet simple recipes.
Blackened Shrimp Kale Caesar Salad
Earlier this week I made salmon and asparagus in a garlic lemon butter sauce, cooked in a foil pack, the recipe from eatwell101. Let me tell you, it was simple to prepare and absolutely delicious. I can recommend this to you all. (That’ not my picture, but my dish came out looking exactly as per.)
Salmon and Asparagus in Garlic Lemon Butter
From Holly at Spend with Pennies I like this recipe for instant pot chicken and vegetables. I don’t have an instant pot, (we call them a pressure cooker), but I’m pretty certain I can make this dish in my little combination microwave / fan oven.
Instant Pot Chicken and Vegetables
This is a different take on a staple vegetable; from Dianes Kitchen why not try these herbed carrots? As a ‘wonder food’ carrots are a brilliant source of beta carotene, fibre, vitamins, potassium, and antioxidants.
Despite that I’m in England in winter I’m eating a lot of salad, and I am attracted to this brussels, butternut, and edamame salad with orange sesame sauce by Heather Christo. Her dishes always look so fabulous.
Brussels Butternut Edamame Salad
no longer on my menu
and I liked both
if music be the food of love, play on…..
At St. Valentine’s Day a young man’s mind turns to love and romance, and having been a young man once I can vouch for that. For all I know a woman’s mind turns to love and romance, and probably food too.
But what to do? Perhaps the young man want’s to take his best girl out for a special meal, in which case find the best restaurant within a reasonable distance of her place, even if you can’t quite afford it….. If the restaurant is in or near a good hotel, and if you think she would like it, then book a room, have champagne sent up.
Or, you could cook something special for the object of your affections. Here are some recipes that might go down well on this Valentine’s weekend.
First for this Valentine’s Day we have a steak. Cooking a great steak is fairly easy if you know how, and Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest has a fabulous recipe for smoked ancho chile salted steaks with drunken burst sweet cherries + burrata. If your paramour likes a big red with their steak, then maybe find a bottle of Barolo.
Smoked Ancho Chile Salted Steak
From Joy the Baker there’s a fabulous recipe for shrimp étouffée risotto. Joy suggests that you cook this dish together ~ whatever floats your boat. (An étouffée is a spicy Cajun stew made with vegetables and seafood.)
Shrimp Étouffée Risotto
If you want to risk pasta, what with your date dressed up to the nines and all, then we have 15 romantically simple pasta dinners that scream ‘That’s Amore!’ This from Brit+Cco. This is a very risky dish of linguini with clams, but it’s so easy and so impressive.
Linguini with Clams
Should your love be vegetarian, vegan, of just into eating a lot of plant-based food right now, then Heather Christo has a collection of 100 plant-based recipes. To save you the bother of looking through this list I’ve found you this beet quinoa salad with pomegranate, mint, and pistachio. This dish can serve as a starter, entree or a side, and you can make it ahead of the evening and keep it in the refrigerator.
Beet Quinoa Salad with Pomegranate, Mint, and Pistachio
Our idea for a romantic dessert comes from In Diane’s Kitchen; this delicious looking strawberry pie. Diane says this is the easiest strawberry pie she has ever made, and face it, you don’t want to be spending all evening in the kitchen.
Our final collection for this Valentine’s day comes from Country Living; 65 Best Valentine’s Day Dinner Ideas for the Most Romantic Date Night. I particularly like this Engagement Chicken Pasta, but maybe don’t tell her what it’s called unless you have the ring.
Engagement Chicken Pasta
if you are eating Italian, ask if the restaurant has a demi-frizzanti Franciacorta. That will impress.
life is not merely being alive, but being well
It still behoves me to search out recipes which will help me to live a healthier life ~ to be fit and well. And in all honesty, that isn’t hard, there are plenty of very tasty, good-looking, and very healthy recipes out there, including on many of the cookery blogs I have been following for ages. Not only that, some of the cooks I follow feature mostly very healthy, allergen-free, and gluten-free dishes.
For me, the three main things I need to concentrate on are to eat much leaner meats, eat a lot more fruits and vegetables, and use much less salt. That shouldn’t be too hard, should it? Actually, I’m finding the much less salt thing quite difficult. Oh well, nothing worthwhile is ever that easy.
First this week we have Diane’s recipe for vegetable rice soup ~ and if you ask me this dish is fantastic. This looks easy, nutritious, and very healthy, perfect for a weekend lunch or a light dinner.
Vegetable Rice Soup
Next, from that specialist in wholesome food, Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest there is this citrus avocado salad with orange tahini vinaigrette. This is a very simple recipe, but so good looking that I’m prepared to bet good money that it’s delicious.
Citrus Avocado Salad with Orange Tahini Vinaigrette
From Erin Clarke, at Well Plated by Erin we have an easy, healthy, and juicy crockpot Mexican chicken. You can make this with chicken breasts or thighs, depending what’s good in your supermarket today. Looks great.
Crockpot Mexican Chicken
Another chicken dish, this time classic chicken noodle soup from Holly at Spend with Pennies. Easily made from scratch Holly says it’s cozy, comforting and delicious ~ it looks it.
Classic Chicken Noodle Soup
From Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats, how about this smoky butternut kale salad with goat cheese and apricot vinaigrette ~ and it’s not just another boring butternut squash kale salad either. (except I might be tempted to use Wensleydale instead of goat cheese)
Smoky Butternut Kale Salad with Goat Cheese and Apricot Vinaigrette
Our collection this week is from Good Housekeeping; 16 healthy salmon recipes that are beyond tasty. These are all fabulous dinner recipes, and not just midweek either. From the list I’ve chosen to feature this very easy roasted salmon and beets with herb vinaigrette. I must try this recipe this weekend.
Roasted Salmon and Beets with Herb Vinaigrette
poor Marmaduke only has healthy eggs for his dinner tonight