Chili makes for an ideal cold weather dinner. It’s my standby when I’m having friends over, not sure exactly what time we will eat, and I want to make it in advance. It’s also hard to mess up.
To make it special, you can serve it with all kinds of fun toppings (avocados, sliced jalapenos, olives, etc.), with a salad and cornbread to round it out. And it’s happy to to simmer on low heat as you wait for your guests to arrive. Continue reading →
What was I thinking when I bought a bag of “southern greens blend,” which is a pound of mustard, turnip, and collard greens–stuff I probably would throw away, not knowing it’s edible–and some spinach?
I was thinking its probably good for me and everything else looked kind of tired after a long drive from the west coast. Flash forward four days, and this bag of trimmings is the only thing in the vegetable drawer. And, right about now I’m thinking this blog should be called the root vegetable kitchen. But, I have hope for a decent healthy dinner in 60 minutes less.
The way some people use bacon to fix food or myriad other situations, I add sweet potatoes. So here’s a quick weeknight healthy vegan dinner that would make Aunt Nettie proud. Continue reading →
Hello first really cold day of winter! All thoughts of a brisk walk in the woods or a climb up a big hill went away after I stepped outside to get the newspaper. Last I checked, the temperature was trying to climb into the double digits.
When it gets this cold, I want to curl up with the cat and read a book. I want to eat something warm, saucy, filling, and savory. And, a trip to the grocery store or anywhere in a cold car is not for a wimp like me. So this is one of those pantry and freezer cooking challenges days.
Fortunately, I had enough of the ingredients to make a version of Mark Bittman’s ma po tofu. I changed some of the proportions, left out green onions, and added red bell pepper and crushed peanuts. Continue reading →
Happy new year! I’m starting 2012 with one simple resolution that will benefit you and me–cooking from cookbooks that I received as treasured gifts in the past couple months.
This I decided during today’s walk around Walden Pond, as I thought about the meaning of life and dismissed tedious fitness goals, and then resolved to cook from more cookbooks this year and read Proust. Continue reading →
The Cement Truck Kitchen was in full holiday gift manufacturing mode this month. We made triple batches of this granola, gearing up for all the bags to deliver from Chanukkah through the new year’s parties.
I’ve been auditioning granola recipes for years. My family has been happy about this and is at the ready to do batch comparisons and blind taste tests.
This recipe is a distant cousin to a long ago Martha Stewart recipe.
In Cement Truck Kitchen taste tests, it’s less sweet, but still tied with Melissa Clark’s olive oil granola and Molly Wizenberg’s granola. I encourage you to make this recipe your own–replace the almonds and pecans with other nuts that you like (pistachios, walnuts, hazelnuts?), swap whole flax seeds or pumpkin seeds for the sesame seeds, and mix in your favorite dried fruits.
Continue reading →