We recently had a lovely brunch in my dear friend Rosie’s garden to show our support for the elimination of the pesticides that have been linked to the decline in bees. This fabulous Torte included ingredients that were pollinated by bees and grown in our garden. We grew the kale, zucchini, dill, thyme, and chives. There is just something about making food from what is readily available in the garden that feels so satisfying. This dish is a looker with it’s potato crust around the rim too. I did take mine out of the springform pan and then decided to reheat it, putting it back in, which in turn made the sides not stay in place as well. Don’t be like me, just serve it room temp if you take it to a potluck, it is just as tasty. I made this the night before our brunch. The flavors of the herbs and cheese was so fresh, light, and yet just a tad rich too. Mix it up, add different herbs, or cheeses, or veggies, add meat for your carnivores if you like. In true bohemian style, make it your own and get creative with it. Here is how I made it…
Exotic, romantic, beautiful. Persian Love Cake. My good friend Kristi requested I make this cake for our friend Autumn’s bridal/bachelorette party we hosted. I thought it was stunning and couldn’t wait to try the worldly flavors. Cardamom, saffron, pistachios, rose…So bohemian and a feast for the senses.
I don’t exactly consider myself a baker. I usually bake a cake or two a year, rarely do I bake cookies, maybe around Christmas. When I do bake, I tend to challenge myself, thinking how hard can it be right? This cake was not simple, and I think perhaps the altitude of Colorado might have been working against me on this one. My cake was not as fluffy as I was hoping, but the flavor. Wow. It was light and not too sweet, full of perfumed mystery. This cake screams Valentines Day if you’re so inclined. I thought Kristi was right on point with choosing this cake as a send off into marriage for our friend. The recipe made 2 small heart shaped pans. I think I will double it next time, cause there will be a next time…
We went to a potluck in the Cherry Creek district of Denver this weekend. What a beautiful home! The hosts were so gracious and generous with tons of food and drinks. They even organized a canned food drive. They had an artist doing charcoal portraits, and we had one done of Makayla. I met some really interesting people too, some of them artists as well.
The hosts requested that we bring either a dessert or a side dish, so we opted for dessert. Makayla made these Lemonies on her own with no help from me at all. We named these delicious treats Lemonies since they are like a brownie, but obviously not brown! They are different than a traditional lemon bar in that they are firm and more dense, which I happen to love. They have a great lemon flavor, but are not too sweet either. They are not gluten free or vegan or low carb or anything else as far as being friendly to any particular diet. But! They are totally delish for those who may stray from time to time or don’t really have to restrict their diets. I have ambition and goals of including treats for other restricted diets here, as I have been having to go more low carb for health reasons lately and have other friends that have other issues and choices as well.
Lately my goal has been to up the health and nutritional value of the food I make. Stuffed shells sounded like a good way to use some of the kale and chard in the garden, and to put a little bit more of an autumnal twist on the dish, I made a sauce with butternut squash instead of the usual tomato sauce.
This was made for a Monday night dinner, though there are several steps to making it. If I was really taking my time, I would have made the sauce better by roasting some tomatoes with the butternut squash and added them along with some cream to the blender. Oh, and roasted garlic. Yummy, roasted garlic, tomato and butternut squash sauce with cream… that will be in a post for another dish. Soup anyone?
On a quest for healthy meals for the family, I came across a recipe for a soba noodle soup. Heavy on the ginger, with the addition of spicy sriracha baked tofu, it became the favorite dish I make for Coda. When summer came along, I wanted to be able to serve the same flavors but without the warm broth, and that is where this salad was born. It is very versatile, you can add whatever seasonal veggies are available. In this particular version I was able to add the snow peas and golden zucchini that I grew in the garden this summer.
I recently made this quick and healthy white bean dip with chive blossoms for the Rocky Mountain Gardening Forum’s spring plant exchange and potluck. You just never know at a potluck what kind of diet people have to adhere to, could be vegan, gluten free or vegetarian, you just never know! Not that I try to please everyone, but I do want as many people as possible to enjoy the food I make. So this dip with gluten free chips and veggies seemed like just the thing. Plus I found this cute basket and bowl set that was begging to go to a potluck.